The Karnataka High Court on Friday set aside a temporary injunction passed by a lower court restraining the media from reporting any alleged defamatory statement against Bengaluru South BJP candidate Tejasvi Surya. The defendants are not prevented from publishing or telecasting any news item which is not defamatory in their opinion, the court said.
In case the plaintiff is aggrieved by any such publication or telecast of any news item, he may approach the Election Commission of India, it said. Passing the order, a division bench comprising Acting Chief Justice L Narayana Swamy and Justice Dinesh Kumar disposed of the case. The court order came on a PIL filed by Association for Democratic Reforms, an NGO, questioning the temporary injunction passed by a City Civil and Sessions Court last month.
The lower court had restrained 49 media outlets, including newspapers, television channels, and social media platforms from reporting any defamatory statement in any manner against Surya. The High Court had reserved its verdict on Thursday. In a surprise move, the BJP had allocated ticket to 28-year-old Surya, just hours before the deadline for filing nominations for the first phase of polls in Karnataka, denying ticket to Tejaswini Ananth Kumar, widow of former union minister Ananth Kumar.
(With inputs from agencies.)