AG’s comments in SC on Rafale probe: Journalist bodies come in support of ‘The Hindu’

New Delhi: A joint statement was issued by the Press Club of India (PCI), the Indian Women’s Press Corps (IWPC) and the Press Association expressing “deep concern” over the AG’s averments which “insinuated that the reports in The Hindu were based on stolen documents”.

It must be noted that Attorney General K K Venugopal yesterday told the apex court that the articles published by the Hindu newspaper about the documents in Rafale deal, were based on documents stolen from the defence ministry.

Condemning the steps to curb the freedom of media in the country, media associations expressed concern over the statement of the attorney general in Supreme Court saying that Attorney General’s remark in the open court can have negative effects not only on media but also on the sources on which the journalists rely.

Media associations further said that declaring it against the Official Secret Act is against the notion of freedom of media in a democratic country like India.

“The Fourth Estate is bound by its dual responsibility of reporting what is in public interest as well as raising questions irrespective of the government in power. It is deeply unfortunate that the discharge of this responsibility is being sought to be stymied by top-ranking officials of the government,” said the journalists’ bodies.