Tribune News Service
New Delhi, December 26
Amid allegations of hate speech, media trial, fake news and violation of right to privacy against the media, a PIL has been filed in the Supreme Court seeking setting up of an independent media tribunal to make journalists and media houses accountable for such acts.
“Over the last few years, media trials, hate speech, propaganda news and paid news have become the order of the day, thereby impeding the right to a fair trial of victims and right to fair and proportionate reporting,” petitioners Nilesh Navalakha, a film producer, and Nitin Memane submitted.
He contended that “reckless reportage by the electronic media without accountability can, by no stretch of imagination, be read into the right to freedom of speech and expression enjoyed by the electronic media”.
They argued that a citizen-led independent media tribunal was needed to hear and expeditiously adjudicate complaints against media businesses.
He said such a body was needed to bring about a balance between the right to freedom of speech and expression of the media houses and right to reputation and the right to dignity as also in the interests of preserving peace and harmony.
The petitioners, however, sought to clarify that his PIL wasn’t aimed at curbing the fundamental rights of the media and that he only wanted to ensure that those indulging in spreading misinformation, inflammatory coverage, fake news and breach of privacy were held to account.