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Stop Media from Reporting Judges' Oral Comments as it 'Tarnishes Image', EC Tells Madras HC

File photo of Election Commission of India.

File photo of Election Commission of India.

The Madras High Court had on Monday observed that the Election Commission must be held “singularly" responsible for the second wave of coronavirus in the country and its officials should be "booked for murder".

The Election Commission on Friday moved Madras HC against the comment that the poll body should be booked for murder for failing to deter crowds during the political campaigns, resulting in spurt in Covid-19 cases. The Commission has furter stated that reports on the issue have “tarnished the image of the EC" and the “media should not be allowed to report oral observations of the Court".

The Commission has submitted an affidavit to the court, where it has mentioned that it is pained by the “publications of the Court’s oral comments" and said that such publication has caused “grave prejudice to the Commission".

“These reports have tarnished the image of the Election Commission of India as an independent constitutional agency that is entrusted with the constitutional responsibility of conducting elections," said the EC.

The EC has prayed that the “Court directs that only what forms part of the record in the present proceedings WP No. 10441/2021 (the Karur case) to be reported by the press and electronic media and further directions may be issued to the media houses to issue necessary clarication in this regard."

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Further it has also urged the Court to “direct the police not to register any FIR for the offence of murder on the basis of media reports on the oral observations attributed to the Court."

The Madras High Court had on Monday observed that the Election Commission must be held “singularly" responsible for the second wave of coronavirus in the country and its officials should be “booked for murder".

A bench of chief justice Sanjib Banerjee and justice Senthilkumar Ramamoorthy had rapped the poll body and warned of stalling the counting of votes on May 2 unless it produced a blueprint of plans on April 30 on Covid-19 protocol at counting centres. “At no cost can counting result as a catalyst for a further surge, politics or no politics, whether the counting takes place in a staggered manner or is deferred,” the court had said.

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first published:April 30, 2021, 12:36 IST