Law Minister Moily promises relook at law of defamation

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New Delhi, Jan 13 (ANI): Union Law Minister M. Veerappa Moily has stated that the Government will review the provisions of defamation often used against journalists to harass them.

Veerappa Moily made the statement in response to suggestions made during the function where he gave away the " International Press Institute -India Award for Excellence in Journalism, 2010.

Moily said: "A healthy, vigilant and fair minded media is essential for our country's development in all spheres. Excellence should not be an occasional effort but a permanent mission for both electronic and print media."

Moily said the government would consider making defamation only a civil offence, as editors and journalists are now subjected to intimidation of criminal prosecution, where proceedings are launched simultaneously in courts in remote places, just to harass the media.

Tarun Tejpal, Editor of Tehelka, received the award at the function, which was attended among others by eminent media personalities besides public men including former Law Minister Ram Jethmalani, senior counsel K T S Tulsi and former Minister Shashi Tharoor.

The award consists of a trophy, a citation and a Rs. two lakh cash for the series done by reporter Teresa Rehman. (ANI)

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