The Supreme Court on Friday granted protection from arrest to Zee News Editor Rajnish Ahuja in a case pertaining to a doctored video of Congress leader Rahul Gandhi, Bar and Bench reported.
In the original video, Gandhi had made a comment about the Students’ Federation of India for attacking his Wayanad office on June 24. Gandhi described the attackers as children and said he had no ill-will against them, the Congress had said.
Congress General Secretary Jairam Ramesh had said that the clip was doctored to make it appear as if Gandhi’s was commenting about the killers of a tailor in Udaipur.
The news channel had aired the doctored video but later retracted it and issued an apology.
On Friday, a bench led by Justice DY Chandrachud directed the court registry to tag the matter along with a related case filed by Zee Hindustan anchor Rohit Ranjan.
“There shall be no coercive action against the Editor with respect to the FIRs registered or the future ones,” the court said. It issued notices to the Centre as well as the state governments of Rajasthan and Chhattisgarh, seeking their stand on the case.
Ahuja’s lawyer Siddharth Dave told the court that cases in connection with the video had been filed against his client in Rajasthan, Chhattisgarh.
The Supreme Court allowed the Jaipur Police to continue with its investigation, as this was the first case registered in connection with the video, Live Law reported. However, the court stayed the investigation in the first information report filed in Raipur.
On July 8, the Supreme Court had directed authorities not to take any coercive action against Ranjan in connection with the case.