Delhi government withdraws controversial circular on defamation

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The Aam Aadmi Party government has withdrawn its controversial circular on filing defamation cases against media organisations for any news that causes damage to its reputation or that of chief minister Arvind Kejriwal and other ministers, reports PTI.

“Government has withdrawn its May 6 circular this week. This circular was related to filing defamation cases against media organizations for any news that causes damage to its reputation or that of CM and other ministers,” a senior government official was quoted as saying.

On May 6, the Delhi government had issued a circular asking government officials to report any defamatory matters to Principal Secretary (Home), who would then refer this to Director, Prosecutions for advice.

A week later, the Supreme Court had stayed this order, which the opposition parties had called an attempt by the AAP-led government to gag the media.
Demanding withdrawal of circular, the Editors Guild of India had also deplored the controversial circular issued by Delhi government regarding defamatory news, calling it a “crude attempt” to “still” media criticism.

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