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Legislators allege trial by media

mumbai Updated: Mar 22, 2013 01:25 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Hindustan Times
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Legislators in the state, on Thursday, slammed a section of the media for projecting them as villains in the incident in which a police officer was beaten up by some MLAs in the Vidhan Bhavan premises and forced the speaker and chairman to admit breach of privilege motion against editors of two Marathi news channels.

Speaker Dilip Walse-Patil admitted the motion against Nikhil Wagle, editor of IBN Lokmat, while the chairman of the council, Shivajirao Deshmukh, granted approval for action against Wagle and editor of ABP Majha Rajiv Khandekar. The duo will now face the privilege committees of the two Houses.

Walse-Patil objected to the news coverage because the editor/anchor doubted his integrity and accused him and CM Prithviraj Chavan of preventing the arrests of the guilty MLAs. “Every institution, be it media, lawmakers, administration or judiciary, has to follow a code of conduct. One cannot hold all the members of a particular institution responsible for the bad conduct of their colleagues,” he said, while commenting on Wagle.

The members of both the Houses accused the channel editors and anchors of using derogatory language and calling them goons and criminals, even as only a few of them were involved in the incident. They accused the media of being judgmental and ruining their social and political career and disturbing their families by making wild allegations. They called for ending the tussle against media and police amicably.

Nationalist Congress Party MLA Shashikant Shinde raised the issue in the Assembly, while Bhai Jagtap (Congress) took it up in the upper House.

The members in the upper house also ensured the suspension of police inspector KB Nigde for entering the Vidhan Bhavan without the speaker’s permission to arrest the two accused MLAs. The lower house was stalled four times before being adjourned over the same issue. Home minister RR Patil said that Nigde had come to the Vidhan Bhavan without an entry pass.