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SC: No proceedings against journalists

The Supreme Court, on Monday, dismissed Delhi government's plea seeking its approval to go ahead with criminal proceedings against two journalists who had unearthed the cash-for-query scam involving MPs in 2005.

delhi Updated: Oct 17, 2011 23:40 IST
HT Correspondent

The Supreme Court, on Monday, dismissed Delhi government's plea seeking its approval to go ahead with criminal proceedings against two journalists who had unearthed the cash-for-query scam involving MPs in 2005.

A bench headed by Justice Aftab Alam refused to entertain the government petition challenging last year's Delhi High Court order that quashed the criminal proceedings against journalists Anirudh Bahal and Suhasini Raj.

The scribes, from a news portal, had conducted a sting operation exposing 11 MPs for accepting bribes to raise and table questions in the Parliament. The sting was carried out in December 2005 and caught the MPs from various political parties accepting bribe on camera.

On September 24, 2010, the HC had defended the journalists' role in the sting operation. It held that the exercise was meant to expose corruption.

“I consider that in order to expose corruption at a higher level and to show to what extent the state managers are corrupt, acting as agent provocateurs, does not amount to committing a crime,” the HC had ruled.

It had also said: “Charging the petitioners under the Prevention of Corruption Act would amount to discouraging people from performing their duties enjoined upon them by the Constitution.”