High Court Delhi HC grants 'last chance' to Centre, Delhi Police...

Delhi HC grants ‘last chance’ to Centre, Delhi Police to reply on leakage of information in Disha Ravi case

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New Delhi, Mar 17 (ILNS) The Delhi High Court today granted two weeks more time to the Delhi Police and the Central government to file their response over the petition filed by Toolkit case accused Disha Ravi, alleging leakage of information to the media and third parties by the Delhi Police.

“Last and final opportunity is granted to both the Central government and Delhi Police to file their response. Two weeks more time is granted for filing of the response,” said Justice Prathiba M Singh, while fixing the matter for further hearing on May 18.

Ravi, a 22-year-old climate activist, who is an accused in the toolkit case, had approached the Delhi High Court, seeking directions to restrain Delhi Police from leaking any investigation material relating to the case filed against her by the Special Cell.

The directions from the High Court came after Disha’s counsel and senior advocate Akhil Sibal submitted before the bench that all the respondents in the case have filed their replies, apart from Respondents 1 and 2, being the Union of India and the Delhi Police.

In her plea, she sought directions not to disclose the contents of her private chats or communication to any third party, including the media. The High Court had, on February 19, refused to grant relief at this stage to Ravi, but directed the Delhi Police to adhere to its affidavit that “it would not leak any information” regarding the investigation or her personal chats in the case.

Justice Prathiba M Singh had said, “Right to privacy, the sovereignty and integrity of the country and the freedom of speech need to be balanced. The recent coverage by media definitely shows there is sensationalised reporting by the media.”

Ravi had said in her petition that the illegal actions and omissions on part of the respondents has irrevocably violated her fundamental right to privacy, her right to reputation, her dignity, and the consequent effect of the administration of justice and right to fair trial – all guaranteed under Article 21 of the Constitution.

“There is no clarification in any of the tweets or the news reporting to the effect that disclosure statements or ‘admissions’ made whilst in police custody are wholly inadmissible in evidence and have no basis in law. As such, in view of the facts described herein, it is highly likely that the general public will perceive these news items as being conclusive as to the guilt of the petitioner,” the plea said.

Ravi was arrested by the Delhi Police on February 13 and granted bail by a trial court here on February 19. ILNS/ANB/JR

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