The Bombay High Court on Monday, hearing the case related to the death of late actor Sushant Singh Rajput, has reprimanded the media for irresponsible coverage.
The court termed the reporting done by two channels in the case as defamatory and said that media trials impede justice.
Not only this, the court has also advised the media houses to exercise restraint while reporting suicide cases in future.
Sushant was found dead on June 14, 2020
Significantly, Sushant Singh Rajput was found dead on 14 June 2020 under mysterious circumstances in his flat in Bandra area. A case of suicide was registered by the Mumbai Police.
More than 50 people were questioned in this case. At the same time, it was also seen from nepotism-prone angle.
According to reports, Sushant was suffering from depression. Because of which he committed suicide. He was just 34 years old.
The coverage of the case was dissolved, the privacy of the deceased
There was a lot of irresponsible coverage of the matter in the media. Many channels even published photos and videos of Sushant’s body.
A channel also described the color of the fabric used for strangling and the method of dying, along with broadcasting photographs of the corpse.
Similarly, fake tweets of Sushant were also published. Due to this, a different message of the matter had reached the public today.
Sushant Singh case demands a ban on media trial
Senior advocate Aspi Chinoy in the case, a group of other citizens and retired police officers had filed a petition in the Bombay High Court seeking a stay on the news broadcast of Sushant’s death on TV news channels.
He had said that irresponsible coverage of the media is affecting the investigation of the case and people are moving away from reality. On this, the court reserved its decision on 6 November 2020.
Contempt of court will be considered if justice is obstructed by coverage- Court
Chief Justice Dipankar Dutta and Justice GS Kulkarni in the case said that media trials interfere and obstruct the delivery of justice and also violates the Program Code under the Cable TV Network Regulation Act.
The court said that showing such news by any media establishment would be considered equivalent to defamation of the court which obstructs the investigation or justice of the case.
Republic TV and Times Now have defamatory coverage
The court said that some reporting by Republic TV and Times Now after the death of Sushant Singh was defamatory. Even then, the bench has not decided to take action against him. These channels need to be cautious in future coverage.
Action will be taken against running the news against the rules – court
The High Court said that any news should be in accordance with the standards of journalism and rules of ethics.
Violating these, media houses publishing news will have to face defamation action.
During this time, the court also advised all media houses to exercise restraint in coverage of other cases like suicide and to publish the news responsibly on the basis of real facts.
NBSA imposed a fine of one lakh rupees on Aaj Tak
Let us know that earlier on 8 October, the News Broadcasting Standards Authority (NBSA) had imposed a fine of Rs 1 lakh on ‘Aaj Tak’ for irresponsible coverage in the case and also asked many channels to apologize.
Similarly, many Bollywood filmmakers also filed a petition in the Delhi High Court for irresponsible coverage. Hearing on that, on November 9, the court issued a notice to the channels.