SC grants six months time to Zee reporter to tender apology

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New Delhi, Feb 20 (UNI) Zee news correspondent Vijay Shekhar today again tried to justify in the Supreme Court the sting operation carried out by him in which arrest warrants were got issued from the court of a judicial magistrate in Gujarat against the then President A P J Abdul Kalam and then Chief Justice of India V N Khare and others.

Senior counsel Arun Jaitley, appearing for Shekhar, contended that the sting operation was carried out in public interest to expose how the judicial system is being manipulated by some lawyers who can get issued warrants against dignitaries even without any complaint having being filed.

A bench comprising Chief Justice K G Balakrishnan and Justices R V Raveendran and J M Panchal, however, indicated to Shekhar that they wanted to close the matter but if the petitioner fails to file an affidavit of unconditional apology then law will have to take its own course and the petitioner will have to face prosecution for the criminal offence committed by him.

The apex court also expressed unhappiness with the Gujarat Bar Council for not taking any action against the lawyer who got the warrants issued after taking Rs 40,000 from Shekhar.

The apex court granted six weeks time to Shekhar to tender an unconditional apology so that the matter may be closed and also told the Bar Council of Gujarat to file a report giving details of the action taken against the lawyer for indulging in such criminal acts.

Warrants were also issued against then sitting judge of the Supreme Court Justice B P Singh and senior counsel R K Jain who has since expired.

Counsel for Shekhar, however, tried to justify his client's action by contending that the CD (compact disc) of sting operation was submitted to this honourable court before being aired on the television channel.

UNI AKS/SC SV RP SSC1419

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