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IT Rules 2021 : Supreme Court Lists Centre's Transfer Petitions, Connected Cases After 6 Weeks

LIVELAW NEWS NETWORK
6 Sep 2021 2:06 PM GMT
IT Rules 2021 : Supreme Court Lists Centres Transfer Petitions, Connected Cases After 6 Weeks
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The Supreme Court has listed after 6 weeks a group of petitions related to the Information Technology (Intermediary Guidelines and Digital Media Ethics Code) Rules, 2021 (IT Rules, 2021).The cases include the petitions filed by the Union Government seeking to transfer to the Supreme Court the cases filed in the High Courts challenging the IT Rules and also challenging the interim orders passed...

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The Supreme Court has listed after 6 weeks a group of petitions related to the Information Technology (Intermediary Guidelines and Digital Media Ethics Code) Rules, 2021 (IT Rules, 2021).

The cases include the petitions filed by the Union Government seeking to transfer to the Supreme Court the cases filed in the High Courts challenging the IT Rules and also challenging the interim orders passed by High Courts in some cases.

A bench led by the Chief Justice of India NV Ramana on September 3 directed the listing of these cases after 6 weeks while hearing a batch of petitions seeking action against media houses which communalzied the Tablighi Jamaat issue.

When the CJI expressed concerns about the trend in a section of the media to give a communal colour to news, which was bringing a "bad name to the country", the Solicitor General of India Tushar Mehta said that the new IT Rules seek to address the very same issue by regulating online media.

The Solicitor General said that petitions have been filed in High Courts across the country challenging the Rules, and in some cases, High Court have passed interim orders as well. The top law officer of the Union submitted that the Supreme Court needs to hear the issue for a conclusive view and that petitions seeking transfer of those cases to the Supreme Court have been filed.

The CJI then asked the SG to furnish the numbers of those cases, and agreed to list them together.

Among the cases which have been directed to be listed is a writ petition through Advocate Mrigank Prabhakar challenging the IT Rules. Special Leave Petitions filed challenging the Kerala High Court's orders granting interim protection from coercive action under Part III of the IT Rules (which seek to regulate digital media) in the cases LiveLaw Media Pvt Ltd and others v. Union of India and News Broadcasters Association and others v. Union of India, and the Bombay High Court's interim order in the case AGIJ Promotion of Ninenteenonea Media Pvt Ltd and others v. Union of India are among those cases.

The writ petition Firoz Iqbal Khan v. Union of India (WP(c) 956/2020), which was filed last year against the "UPSC Jihad" show in Sudarshan New TV, the special leave petition field by Justice For Rights Foundation (SLP(c) 10937/2019) against a Delhi High Court order dismissing a writ petition filed by the NGO seeking to regulate OTT platforms, and a writ petition filed by Shashank Shekhar Jha (WP(c) 1080/202) seeking regulation of OTT platforms are the other cases mentioned by the Central Government's counsel.

Senior Advocate Sanjay Hegde mentioned a special leave petition filed against a Telangana High Court judgment refusing to issue guidelines to regulate communal hate campaign in Twitter and other social media(Khwaja Aijazuddin v.Union of India, SLP(c) 6913/2021).

Taking into account these cases, the bench passed the following order

"...the Registry is directed to list all the Petitions as mentioned above along with the main matters on the next date of hearing. List the matters after six weeks".

Click here to read/download the order



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