Freedom of press can’t be one-way traffic,says SC in defamation case

  1. Recently,the Supreme Court judge has observed that Freedom of the press is supreme but it cannot be one-way traffic.
  2. This observation came after the apex court allowed a news portal to withdraw its plea against proceedings in a defamation case filed by a petitioner.
  3. In India,freedom of the press has been treated as part of the freedom of speech and expression guaranteed by Article 19(1) (a) of the Constitution.
  4. However,the freedom of the press is not absolute.The restrictions that apply to the freedom of speech and expression also apply to the freedom of press and media.
  5. Article 19(2) provides reasonable restrictions on the following grounds: (a)sovereignty and integrity of India (b)the security of the State (c)friendly relations with foreign States (d)public order (e)decency or morality or in relation to contempt of court (f)defamation or incitement to an offence.
  6. Further,Press which is the fourth pillar of democracy has been facing serious challenges such as (a)Paid News which is a nexus between media persons and politicians (b)Corporate and political lobbying and ownership (c)Yellow journalism means unnecessary sensationalization of news to fetch TRP (d)weak regulation (e)media trials among others.