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Patna HC order on media reporting: Editors Guild asks Chief Justice of India to intervene

By Our Representative
The Editors Guild of India, decrying the recent growing trend of courts issuing restraint orders on media, has said it is "deeply concerned over a Patna High Court order restraining the media from reporting on the investigation into the Muzaffarpur shelter abuse case."
A verbal order issued by the division bench of Chief Justice Mukesh R Shah and Justice Dr Ravi Ranjan on August 23 said that till the investigation into the shelter case was completed, all the print and electronic media were restrained from reporting anything with respect to the case, more particularly, with respect to the investigation already undertaken and/or which was likely to take place as it could seriously hamper the investigation of the case.
The Guild noted, "The court, instead of protecting media freedom, has issued an order that has effectively curbed it." Condemning such orders, as it believes that "such restrictions on reporting on investigations into a matter of public importance are counterproductive", the Guild said, they "undermine one of the pillars of democracy." It asked the Chief Justices of the "Supreme Court of India and the Patna High Court to review the restraint order and uphold the principles of a free media and democracy."

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