News: Indian cricket captain M S Dhoni granted surprising defamation injunction

20 03 2014

M S DhoniOn Tuesday 18 March 2014, the Madras High Court granted the captain of the Indian cricket team, M S Dhoni, a surprising interim defamation injunction to restrain the publication of match fixing allegations. Read the rest of this entry »

Indian media face growing calls for regulation – Sumit Galhotra

19 06 2013

imagesThe rapid growth of revenue-hungry Indian media and recent scandals involving news outlets have prompted growing calls for external regulation, raising concerns about independence of the press. In May 2013, a parliamentary committee argued for the creation of a statutory body to control the print and electronic media. Read the rest of this entry »

Does India need its Leveson? – Arghya Sengupta

5 02 2013

RTR20GEN-620x438India has its own fierce debate about media regulation. Arghya Sengupta discusses how the shadow of the 1970s “Emergency” hangs over proposed steps from failed self-regulation to statutory regulation.

Lord Justice Leveson’s widely anticipated report on the British press is of considerable interest in India, where a feisty discussion on regulating an increasingly powerful print and broadcasting media has been brewing for the past year. The outspoken Chairman of the Press Council of India Markandey Katju has declared the futility of self-regulation with the words, ‘self-regulation is no regulation at all’. Read the rest of this entry »

News from India: Allegations of Bribery, Libel, the Army and the Constitution

27 05 2012

A remarkable defamation case has been before the courts in India over the past few months.  Criminal and constitutional proceedings have been brought by  retired Lt Gen. Tejinder Singh (pictured) a former director general of Defence Intelligence Agency against the Army Chief of Staff, General V K Singh and four others over a press release making an allegations of bribery against him.  The criminal proceedings are continuing but the constitutional proceedings were not successful. Read the rest of this entry »

Disclosure of Politicians’ Tax Returns and Freedom of Expression: drawing on the Indian experience – Hugh Tomlinson QC

11 04 2012

The disclosure by the London Mayoral candidates of their tax returns has led to a wider debate about tax disclosure by politicians.  The Chancellor, George Osborne, has said he would be “very happy” for the government to consider publishing the personal tax returns of senior cabinet ministers.  The Prime Minister has said he is “very relaxed” about publishing his tax returns and believes the “time is coming” for politicians to be more open about their personal finances. Read the rest of this entry »

Case Comment: Sawant v Times Global Broadcasting Limited – an extraordinary award of compensatory damages by an Indian court

27 11 2011

We had a post last week about the extraordinary defamation case of Sawant v Times Global Broadcasting Co Ltd – where a petition for stay was recently rejected by the Supreme Court.  We have now located a copy of the Judgment [pdf] of the Judge of Pune District Court, V K Desmukh, in which she awarded the plaintiff, retired Indian Supreme Court justice, Parshuram Babaram Sawant, the sum of Rs 100 crore (£12 million).  Read the rest of this entry »

Freedom of expression: Indian media organisations condemn £12 million defamation damages award to retired judge

19 11 2011

Serious questions about the compatibility of law of defamation in India with the right to freedom of expression have been raised by a remarkable case in which damages of £12.5 million (Rs 100 crore that is, Rs 1 billion) were awarded to a retired Supreme Court judge over a television broadcast.

A photograph of the plaintiff, Retired Supreme Court Justice P B Sawant, (pictured) was broadcast on 10 September 2008 by mistake to illustrate a report of a provident fund scam  allegedly involving Justice P.K Samanta, a Calcutta High Court judge.  It was alleged that several judges were involved in the Ghaziabad Provident Fund scam.  The photograph was aired for about 15 seconds in its 6:30 pm news bulletin. Read the rest of this entry »


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