SC stays Delhi HC order which prevented the EC from acting against paid news

Supreme Court clarified that the High Court was only the concerned case and it does not establish a precedent

The Supreme Court, in a hearing held on Friday, stayed an order of the Delhi High Court that restricted the power of the Election Commission (EC) to act against paid news. The stay will allow EC to crack down on the instances of paid news in the five states going to poll next month.

The Election Commission had filed a Special Leave Petition (SLP) in the Supreme Court against the Delhi High Court Division Bench order contending that motivated propaganda by politicians published in newspapers cannot be considered part of their fundamental right to free speech. The EC had petitioned that the order of the High Court should be limited only to the concerned case and it should be treated as a precedent,

A division bench of the Delhi High Court had set aside an Election Commission order which disqualified Narottam Mishra, an MLA from Datia constituency in Madhya Pradesh after it claimed to have established 42 cases of ‘paid news’ in the newspapers in the run-up to polls in 2008.

- Advertisement - - Article resumes -

The division bench in its order said that the Election Commission was attempting to exercise indirect control over the freedom of speech of the candidates. Para 77 of the order read, “Election Commission’s remit cannot ordinarily extend to judging content of speech; it is only to adjudge whether the election expenses incurred by the candidate or someone on her or his behalf, under her or his authority have been accounted” for.

In para 76 of the order states that the EC had “erred in interpreting” various laws and failed to establish that Narottam Mishra, a BJP minister in Madhya Pradesh, was responsible for the publication of 42 offending articles/features/ election appeals.

“The content of a media article, or a news feature or series of features on particular candidates, should ordinarily not be regulated indirectly through the directives of the EC; they essentially fall within the domain of free speech. Any indirect control would impact a citizen’s right to free speech and expression. Such indirect control would chill the right and freeze all debates — essential to democracy,” the court observed.

The Supreme Court clarified that sections 76 and 77 of the High Court order are related only to the case of Narottam Mishra, and it does establish any precedent for other decisions of EC in the context of paid news.

The Supreme Court’s order on the Delhi High Court judgement is crucial in view of the upcoming elections in the five states of Madhya Pradesh, Chhattisgarh, Rajasthan, Mizoram and Telangana.

The Supreme Court order can be accessed here [PDF].


Share This Post and Support:
We need your support to survive in the media industry. Please consider paying us for the content we produce:

To know more about these payments, please click here.


Most read articles recently

Locals even pelted stones at injured jawans

Pulwama attack: Women, children in Kashmir ferried expensive military grade RDX in small quantities for months

The trigger for the explosive was manufactured locally and that ammonium nitrate was used as an oxidizer in the RDX explosive. The military grade RDX was obtained from Pakistan and the device was assembled around 10 km from the blast site.

Pakistanis get scared about attack by India after seeing their own Air Force fighter jets flying over civilian areas

Several people posted on social media that India has dropped bombs over Sialkot in Pakistan

Waters of 3 rivers flowing into Pakistan will be diverted to Yamuna as per Indus Water Treaty: Nitin Gadkari

Nitin Gadkari had said that dams and other developmental projects are being conceptualised on the 3 rivers will choke Pakistan’s water supply

Congress workers used to do booth capturing for me and my father when there was no EVM : Congress leader Kirti Azad

Kirti Azad was suspended from the Bharatiya Janata Party in 2015 after he accused senior BJP leader Arun Jaitley of Corruption.
Image Source: The Week

Mandya: Actor-turned-politician Prakash Raj attends funeral of Pulwama martyr, villagers expose his hypocrisy towards Armed Forces

Prakash Raj, a left wing ideologue, who is often known for joining hands with the left-liberals to express their hate towards Hindus and the BJP, has plans to contest in the upcoming elections from Bengaluru Central Lok Sabha constituency.

After Ajaz Ashraf of Caravan reduced martyrs to their caste, he shouldn’t play victim when he is reduced to his religion

In his report, Ajaz Ashraf says quite clearly that he called the martyrs of the family to in their moment of unimaginable tragedy to inquire about their caste.
After expressing excitement over Parliament attack, Rajdeep Sardesai says “World Cup without Pakistan in England is unthinkable" on the basis of 'one terror attack’

After expressing excitement over Parliament attack, Rajdeep Sardesai says ‘World Cup without Pakistan in England is unthinkable’ on the basis of ‘one terror attack’

Rajdeep Sardesai, who often fantasise Pakistani Prime Minister Imran Khan has also expressed his disappointment over the removal of Imran Khan's portrait from the Cricket Club of India, Mumbai.
How Ravish Kumar and Vinod Dua misled people about ‘martyr status’ to CRPF jawans after Pulwama attack

How Ravish Kumar and Vinod Dua misled people about ‘martyr status’ to CRPF jawans

Ravish Kumar of NDTV is a man known for many lows. But this may well be his lowest point.
Amar Singh donates property worth Rs 15 crore to RSS-affiliated Seva Bharti.

Amar Singh donates ancestral properties worth 15 crores to RSS-affiliated organisation Seva Bharti

Amar Singh donated Rs 15 crore property to Seva Bharti, an RSS affiliated social service organisation.

Gurmehar Kaur mouths off platitudes on Pulwama attack, says Incidents like this create political polarisation against minorities

Kaur, a self-proclaimed peace activist, speaking on the Pulwama terrorist attck express concerns over the political aftermath, not the religious hatred that was behind the attack.

Latest articles

Connect with us

138,277FansLike
111,196FollowersFollow
23,459SubscribersSubscribe

Don't miss these