Ahmedabad: The Supreme Court has on Thursday directed the Additional Chief Metropolitan Magistrate in Ahmedabad not to proceed with the criminal defamation case filed by Jay Shah, son of BJP national president, Amit Shah, against The Wire, a news portal in regards to an article published by them, till April 12.
In 2017, The Wire had reported that a company owned by Jay Shah had a whopping increase of over 16,000 times in its turnover in a single year after Narendra Modi was elected as the Prime Minister of the country. Following the publication of this article by the portal, a suit was filed by Shah against the author of the article, Rohini Singh, founding editors of the news portal Siddharth Varadarajan, Siddharth Bhatia and M K Venu, managing editor Monobina Gupta, public editor Pamela Philipose and the Foundation for Independent Journalism, a non-profit company which publishes The Wire. Shah rejected the accusations made in the article saying that the story was "false, derogatory and defamatory".
A three judge bench consisting of Chief Justice Dipak Misra, Justice D.Y. Chandrachud and Justice A.M. Khanwilkar also remarked that the media does not have the freedom to write whatever it feels about anyone. The Chief Justice said, "I have spoken many times about Freedom of Speech and Expression. We are not going to gag the media. But the press should be more responsible. How can anyone write whatever they feel about anyone? There are limits. They are writing sometimes which amounts to sheer contempt of court.”
In February, the The Gujarat High Court had restored a gag order against the news portal, thereby debarring it from publishing any article related to the businesses of Jay Shah.