Supreme Court refuses to gag media in Adani-Hindenburg row
Adani-Hindenburg row: The Supreme Court on Friday clarified that it will not issue any injunction against the media for reporting on the Hindenburg report against the Adani Group.
A Bench led by Chief Justice DY Chandrachud said it was not going to issue any injunction to the media for reporting on the Hindenburg report. Advocate ML Sharma mentioned his application and stressed his plea seeking a media gag on the Hindenburg report and news surrounding it.
Earlier, the Supreme Court reserved its order on various pleas relating to the Adani-Hindenburg row. The court on Friday said it would pronounce its order shortly.
Advocate ML Sharma had earlier filed a plea seeking to issue a gag order restraining the media to release any statement against the listed companies, including the Adani group of the companies unless pre-verified by the SEBI.
The petitioner advocate ML Sharma had also sought a probe against the US-based firm, whose report led to a frensied selling-off of shares held by the Adani group and sending its global stocks on a freefall.
Manohar Lal Sharma, in his other plea in the Supreme Court, sought a direction to issue a gag order restraining the media from releasing any statement /allegations against the listed companies, including the Adani group of companies without being pre-verified by the Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI) in accordance with the law.
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"If the Gag order restraining media to release any allegations without verified by SEBI is not issued millions of innocent investors will be suffered serious financial and reputation loss and injury which cannot be compensated in terms of money on the other hand if Ex-parte Gag order is released restraining media to release any statement and allegation without pre-verified by SEBI there will be no loss and injury to anyone and millions of investors will be protected," the plea said.
An allegation without verified evidence is dangerous and cannot be allowed to be released in any manner in either forum in any media by any one, the advocate said.
He claimed further that media hype has crashed the Indian share market by more than 50 per cent. Regular allegations /statements in the media is creating panic amongst investors, who are selling their stocks and suffering financial losses.
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Common investors are being butchered and it must be stopped in the interest of justice, the petitioner said.
Earlier, claiming the US-based short-seller had "exploited innocent investors", he filed a public interest litigation in the Supreme Court seeking a probe against the firm.
The PIL sought an inquiry to prosecute short-seller Nathan Anderson, a resident of the US, and his Indian entities. The plea also sought to register an FIR against Anderson and his associates for exploiting and duping lakhs of innocent investors.
In the "interest of justice", Sharma also sought compensation for investors, who suffered losses due to a crash in the stock markets. Anderson is the founder of Hindenburg Research.