An Ahmedabad civil court on Saturday set aside the interim injunction imposed on news website The Wire for its article on the spike in revenues of the company owned by the son of Bharatiya Janata Party President Amit Shah the year after Narendra Modi became prime minister in 2014.
The court had imposed a gag order on The Wire, barring it from publishing any content “directly or indirectly” related to Jay Shah or his Temple Enterprises. The Wire had filed a petition against the injunction, arguing that it “represented an unconstitutional restriction on the freedom of the press”, and that the article mentioned “nothing defamatory” as it was based entirely on public records.
Jay Shah had filed a defamation case against The Wire in October, after which the Ahmedabad court issued the injunction. On November 28, the Gujarat High Court had rejected The Wire’s plea against the gag order and asked it to approach the Ahmedabad civil court that issued the order. The lower court had reserved its verdict in the case on December 17.
Going back on its earlier order, the civil court on Saturday ruled that barring the use of the words “Narendra Modi becoming prime minister/elected prime minister” in relation to any debate on the original article on Jay Shah, The Wire is free to publish content on his business and public activities.