New Delhi: The News Broadcasters Federation, welcomes the move of the Supreme Court of India, showing concern on the colonial-era sedition laws of Indian Penal Code 1860, that are often misused by authorities to gag and muzzle the media against broadcasting any criticism in public interest, of authorities in power.
“We are of the view that the ambit and parameters of the provisions of Sections 124A, 153A and 505 of the Indian Penal Code 1860 would require interpretation, particularly in the context of the right of the electronic and print media to communicate news, information and the rights, even those that may be critical of the prevailing regime in any part of the nation,” a three-Judge of the Supreme Court, consisting of Dr. Justice D.Y. Chandrachud, Justice L. Nageswara Rao, and Justice S. Ravindra Bhat, said in their order on Monday.
The Bench was hearing petitioners TV5 and ABN, who had challenged the FIR charges against broadcasting news and views critical of the State Government of Andhra Pradesh and its Chief Minister. The order also restrained the State Government of Andhra Pradesh from taking any coercive actions against the two news channels, till the next date of listing.
The News Broadcasters Federation strongly stands and appreciates TV5, our respected member who have taken this issue of Freedom of Speech and Expression.
NBF believes fair and honest criticism forms the backbone of democracy. NBF herein reiterates and urges the Government of India to immediately set-up and independent neutral national agency to investigate into any allegations of professional misconduct by journalists, executives, and owners of news media company, in order to prevent selective harassment by the State Authority and to ensure the Freedom of Press.