Court hearings are a matter of public interest and adds to accountability for the judges and judicial processes: Supreme Court

On Monday, the apex court held that, media cannot be discouraged from reporting oral observations made by the judges during a court hearing. The discussions are of public interest and people are empowered to be aware of how the judicial proceedings unfold.

Such a reporting of court hearings would further make the courts accountable and will encourage the confidence of citizens in the judicial system of the country.

The petitioner,  Election Commission of India (ECI), had filed a case against the oral remarks of Madras High Court that ECI was “single handedly responsible for the second wave of COVID and its officers should be booked for murder”

The bench objected to the prayer by ECI to stop media from reporting oral remarks by the Court which are not a part of the final order. Justice Chandrachud held that, the happenings of a court are also a concern of the citizens and media should report every aspect of such hearings. He called such a prayer by ECI “far-fetched”.

The court agreed that the High Court’s ‘murder charger’ remark were strong and that the courts should be careful while making observations. The bench said that it will formulate a balance order that will preserve the High Court’s sanctity and reserved orders on ECI application which would be pronounced on Thursday.

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