Don’t publish private, defamatory material on Shehla Rashid, Srinagar court tells media

The activist is involved in a legal dispute with her estranged father, who has made unfounded allegations against her.

ByNL Team
Don’t publish private, defamatory material on Shehla Rashid, Srinagar court tells media
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A Srinagar court on Wednesday restrained activist Shehla Rashid’s estranged father as well as the media from publishing any material that is “defamatory, intrusive of her right to privacy or her right to live with dignity and honour”, Bar and Bench reported.

The court also asked online platforms such as Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, and Google to suspend the links to defamatory content involving her that is already published.

According to Live Law, the court held that the material published against Shehla, her mother and sister violated their "right to privacy and right to live with dignity and honour", and that the media had no justification to highlight a private matter between them and Shehla’s father, Abdul Rashid Shora, when it was being dealt with by a court.

Rashid had alleged that he faced a threat to his life from his wife and daughters. Shehla dismissed the allegations as "absolutely false and concocted".

In the court, Shehla, her mother and sister argued that Rashid had made attempts to defame and lower their reputation by leveling false allegations against them, including branding them "anti-national elements”.They also argued that media outlets Earth News, State Times and Jammu Kashmir News “did not conduct themselves professionally” by publishing Rashid’s allegations “without verification and due investigation”.

Reporting on the allegations made against Shehla by her father, India Today had falsely claimed the former JNU student leader was arrested in a sedition case in 2016. In response, Shehla had urged the TV news channel to “stick to facts”.

“The media is also under a legal duty to ascertain the truth and abstain from reporting on a matter which has a potential of infringement of right to privacy or other rights of the plaintiff,” the court said.

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