The Delhi Police on Thursday opposed the media plea seeking access to the trial in the December 16 gang rape case, telling the high court that the enquiry and trial in every rape case should be held in-camera.
Appearing for the police before Justice Rajiv Shakdher, special public prosecutor Dayan Krishnan countered the claim of petitioners that this case is "exceptional" and the media has an independent right derived from the Constitution.
"The enquiry and trial in a rape case has to be held in-camera in the interest of justice," he said.
The lawyer also argued that the right to report by the media is not absolute. The media cannot claim as a party in the case and the legal provisions will apply only to either the accused or the victim as they are the necessary parties, the lawyer added.
The counsel also questioned the maintainability of the writ petition before the court saying the petitioners should have filed a revision petition challenging the gag order passed by the magistrate as well as the sessions court.
Seeking the court to dismiss the plea, the lawyer said, "This writ cannot be maintained as the alternative remedy is available which is by way of revision."
Appearing for the petitioners, a group of accredited legal journalists, advocate Meenakshi Lekhi argued the media has a duty to access to all the cases, which is part of a democratic system. A blanket ban order against the media access is a "bad order" in a free society, she added.