'Irresponsible reporting': Bollywood producers file suit against Republic, Times Now over 'drug mafia' coverage

The suit singled out Arnab Goswami, Pradeep Bhandari, Rahul Shivshankar and Navika Kumar, and sought an injunction against the two channels.

WrittenBy:NL Team
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Thirty-eight Bollywood producers and film associations have filed a suit in the Delhi High Court over the "irresponsible reporting by certain media houses" in the context of "drug mafia" reports in the Sushant Singh Rajput case, Bar and Bench reports.

The lawsuit reportedly singles out Republic's Arnab Goswami and Pradeep Bhandari, and Times Now's Rahul Shivshankar and Navika Kumar, Bar and Bench says, for "conducting media trials of Bollywood personalities and interfering with the right to privacy of persons associated with Bollywood".

Parties to the suit include production companies owned by Karan Johar, Yash Raj, Aamir Khan, Shah Rukh Khan and Salman Khan, NDTV reports.

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The suit says: "The livelihood of persons associated with Bollywood is being severely impacted by the smear campaign being run by the defendants. This is in addition to the ongoing pandemic which has resulted in extreme revenues and work opportunity loss. The privacy of the members of Bollywood is being invaded, and their reputations are being irreparably damaged by painting the entire Bollywood as criminals, seeped in drug culture, and making being part of Bollywood as synonymous with criminal acts in the public imagination..."

It also stated that the channels were "openly flouting" the programme code and making a "mockery of the criminal justice system". Bar and Bench notes that the producers are not asking for a ban on coverage of the case, but permanent injunctions against Republic and Times Now "from carrying on reportage and publication of material that violates applicable laws".

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