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NDTV to SC: Won’t apologize for Pathankot attack coverage

LiveMint logoLiveMint 31-03-2017 Apurva Vishwanath

New Delhi: New Delhi Television Ltd (NDTV) told the Supreme Court on Friday that the channel will not tender an apology for its coverage of the Pathankot terrorist attack on 2 January 2016.

Senior Advocate Harish Salve appearing for NDTV informed a bench comprising justices A.K.Sikri and Ashok Bhushan that no apology will be tendered.

The government’s law officer solicitor general Ranjit Kumar said that the case must now be heard on merits and decided by the court.

In an earlier hearing, the government had said that its one-day blackout order against NDTV India will be reversed the channel offers an apology.

On 3 November, 2016, the information & broadcasting (I&B) ministry had asked NDTV India to go-off air for a day on 9 November for revealing ‘sensitive details’ on the 2 January, 2016 Pathankot terrorist attack.

Days later, NDTV moved the apex court challenging the constitutional validity of the order and “the provisions of law pursuant to which the said order has purportedly been passed”.

An inter-ministerial committee set up by the I&B ministry had held the channel in violation of the programming code of the Cable Television Networks (Amendment) Rules, 2015.

In a live telecast, the channel revealed the exact location of the suspected Pakistan-based terrorists involved in the attack on the Pathankot air base, the committee said in its recommendations, released by the I&B ministry. The ministry had, however, put the ban in abeyance.

The case will be heard next after three weeks.

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