The Bombay High Court division bench has asked media to exercise restraint while publishing any information on the recent developments over Bollywood actor Sushant Sing Rajput’s death.
The High Court division bench, headed by Justices A A Sayed and S P Tavade said media should ensure its reporting should not cause any harm to investigation on the death of the actor, PTI reports.
“We urge and expect the media to exercise restraint before publishing or reporting on details of the investigation, and report in such a manner that it does not hamper the investigation,” the court said.
In the recent days, media reports over the actor’s death has arguably taken a untoward turn, with some reports appearing more like presumption than facts.
The division bench was hearing two petitions, one of which claimed the ongoing “media trial” over the actor’s death must be stopped. Eight former IPS officers petitioned against the “unfair, malicious, and false media campaign” on Mumbai Police.
And the other petition by filmmaker Nilesh Navlakha and two others claimed media must be directed to stop sensationalization of the ongoing developments over the actor’s death, PTI reported.
Bollywood actor Sushant Singh Rajput died at his Mumbai apartment and the actor’s body was found hanging on the ceiling.
However, death erupted one of the biggest controversies the Bollywood film industry has ever seen with fans and fraternity alike alleged the actor was killed, and his death was not a suicide as the official autopsy reports claimed.
The actor’s death also pulled-in his former girlfriend Rhea Chakraborty into the fiasco after Rajput’s father field a case against Chakroborty over abetment to murder and misappropriating his money.
Rhea Chakraborty, also an actor, has been ever since subjected to a brutal hate campaign by some of India’s most high-profile outlets along with public scrutiny and social media hate over her relations with Sushant and her alleged ‘role’ in the actor’s death.
Within days after Rajput’s death, the media target shifted to Chakraborty, and with it came a vicious cycle of misogynistic attacks, and speculative abuse. Every detail of her life has been lain bare to the public.
Bollywood star Vidya Balan and a few others came in support of the brutal treatment of Rhea Chakraborty over the actor’s death, where still now there is no conclusive evidence of any involvement by Chakroborty.
“It is so unfortunate that the tragic and untimely death of a beloved young star Sushant Singh Rajput has become a media circus. In the same breath, as a woman, my heart breaks at the vilification of Rhea Chakraborty,” Vidya Balan wrote in reply to a tweet by South Indian star Lakshmi Manchu.
Bombay High Court has postponed the two petitions from the filmmakers and the IPS officer until September 10. The bench said, before further delving into hearing it will await CBI and state govt.’s response to the pleas.
Meanwhile, the bench has directed filmmaker Navlakha to serve the copies of his petition to new and media outlets adressabe in his plea.
Havlakha’s lawyer clarified, with their petition, they’re not seeking probation in media reports on Rajput’s case, but are just urging for some sensitivity and adherence to journalistic standards.
Rhea Chakraborty is being currently probed by FBI and NCB over drug over drug trafficking case on the actor’s death.