The Indian Election Commission (ECI) on Friday tried desperately to obtain an order from the Madras High Court to prevent the media from reporting oral submissions made by judges during the hearing of election-related cases. However, the court refrained from making such an order.
He said the ICE’s sub-application, against the media, was not available in the case bundle.
Chief Justice Sanjib Banerjee and Justice Senthilkumar Ramamoorthy also ruled on the main motion itself, in which the sub-motion was preferred.
The written petition had in fact been preferred by the Minister of Transport, Mr. Vijayabhaskar, asking that certain rules be put in place on the day of the counting of the votes in the constituency of Karur, from where he seeks re-election to the Assembly. .
Stating that the report in print and electronic media on some oral submissions made at the last hearing had seriously damaged the reputation of the ECI, lead lawyer Rakesh Dwivedi said the reports had become so serious that people have started filing a complaint with the police for recording murder and culpable homicide cases against ICE officials.
Therefore, the ICE urged the court to order the relevant media organizations to provide clarification, in addition to asking them to limit their reporting to written orders. He also called on the police to refrain from recording first intelligence reports for the murder offense based on the reports of the oral observations attributed to the court. However, the chief justice said: “We find no application here. You renew your candidacy for any other question, we will examine it. ”
The House disposed of the minister’s petition because it had already issued elaborate instructions for compliance with the COVID-19 protocol during the counting of votes scheduled for Sunday while adopting provisional orders on a suo motu request in public interest litigation taken up by it.
Also during the hearing of the DIP’s petition, Mr. Dwivedi had urged the court to pass certain orders preventing the media from sensationalizing the hearings.
He said holding elections in the midst of a pandemic was a difficult task and that many ECI officials, including Chief Election Commissioner Sushil Chandra, had tested positive for COVID-19. He said the report undermined the authority of the ICE.
When adopting interim orders in the suo motu In the case, the judges wrote that the “autopsy” of the sensationalism complaint might have to wait since the immediate concern was to fight the pandemic.