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Yellow journalism hurting institutions, maligning people’ News Portal Withdraws Plea

August 28, 2019 05:24 AM


Yellow journalism hurting institutions, maligning people’
News Portal Withdraws Plea

New Delhi:

The Supreme Court on Tuesday expressed concern over the “rise of yellow journalism” which it said was damaging institutions and maligning people and added that the issue needed to be examined. It said freedom of press was supreme but it could not be oneway traffic.

A bench of Justices Arun Mishra, M R Shah and B R Gavai passed the remarks while hearing an appeal filed by news portal ‘The Wire’ and its journalists who are facing a defamation suit filed by Jay Shah, son of home minister Amit Shah.

Jay Shah had moved the lower court alleging defamation by the news portal and its journalists after an article claimed that his company’s turnover grew exponentially after the BJP-led government came to power at the Centre in 2014. Although the bench allowed the portal’s plea to withdraw its appeal against the Gujarat high court’s gag order on publishing of the article, it disapproved the practice followed by media houses to give short notice of a few hours to people to respond before filing a story against them.

“The institution has suffered a lot. We have suffered. How has this culture come up in India. Why should we not take the issue suo motu and settle it. It is most unfortunate that an important case is being withdrawn. We want his matter to be decided. We are worried as judges of this court,” the bench said when senior advocate Kapil Sibal, appearing for the portal, urged the court to allow it to withdraw the petitions.

While reporting the sexual harassment case against CJI Ranjan Gogoi, some news portals gave a short time to the SC registry to respond and, then, went ahead to post the report. On Tuesday, however, the bench did not explicitly refer to that episode. “This is a serious issue and it has to be examined. This is nothing but yellow journalism,” the bench said

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