Television

HC reserves orders on Kannada Crime Serials

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BANGALORE: A division bench of the Karnataka high court, comprising justices A M Farooq and A B Hinchgeri, reserved its orders on Tuesday on a petition filed by city based advocate A. V. Amarnathan on banning two crime TV serials as they might affect judicial process of some trials.

The Karnataka HC had permitted the advocate general to file contempt proceedings against two Kannada crime serials following government counsel contending that the opinions expressed in the serials about the innocence or guilt of the accused in any manner were pre-judicial to the interest of the justice delivery system.

The petion had argued that such serials amounted to holding a parallel trial by the media. Continued telecast of the serials could constitute contempt of court.

Based on the Public Interest Litigation (PIL) filed by Amaranthan, the government had also sought a blanket direction to the media not to carry stories in violation of the criminal justice system.

On 12 January, bailable warrants were issued against Udaya TV and its programme Crime Story producer-director Balakrishna Kakatkar, and also against ETV and its programme Crime Diary, which was produced and directed by Ravi Belegere.

As reported by indiantelevision.com earlier, the state government had sought direction from the HC on banning of two serials since they were effecting fair trials of criminal cases, infringing upon the rights of citizens and adversely effecting public interest.

The petiton alleged that the serials were presenting facts even before filing of an first information report (FIR) with the police, recording views of police officers, interviewing criminals, victims and or their next of kin. This, it was pointed out, resulted in a trial by the media, prejudicing and interfering with the judicial proceedings.

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