Rajat Sharma termed the allegations a conspiracy to slander his name and reputation.

New Delhi:

The Delhi High Court has directed the Congress leaders Ragini Nayak, Jairam Ramesh, Pawan Khera and social media platforms to remove the tweets/ videos alleging that veteran journalist Rajat Sharma used abusive language during a live show on the day of Lok Sabha election results.

Journalist Rajat Sharma moved a defamation suit in the Delhi High Court against Congress leaders on Saturday and sought direction for immediate takedown of the posts on X and YouTube videos posted by them.

The bench of Justice Neena Bansal Krishna in an order passed on June 14, 2024, stated that “The irreparable loss and injury would be caused to the plaintiff/ Rajat Sharma if the videos and Tweets, etc as mentioned above, are allowed to be in the public domain, it would continue to cause harm to his reputation as a respectable Journalist which would cause irreparable harm to the plaintiff.”

“No harm would be caused to the defendants (Congress Leaders and Social Media platforms ) if the material is restrained from remaining in the public domain till the suit is adjudicated on merits, while these tweets have the potential of bringing disrepute to the Plaintiff in future with practically no reparation to the damage to his reputation”.

“The plaintiff may have quantified damages for defamation and to his reputation but if such videos are permitted to remain in public, the harm already caused would get perpetuated in future. Therefore, the irreparable loss would be caused to the applicant/plaintiff in case the injunction as sought by the applicant/plaintiff is not granted,” said the bench.

The bench directed, “the X posts/Tweets which have not been removed, be removed within seven days by the defendants in terms of the Intermediary Guidelines. It is further directed that the videos which are in the public domain be made private by Google India Pvt Ltd and not to be put in the public domain, without the Orders of this Court.”

Rajat Sharma through suit had sought interim relief to restrain the Congress leaders from making allegations against him. He has sought directions to take down the related videos with immediate effect from X and other social media intermediaries.

Recently, Congress spokesperson Ragini Nayak accused Sharma of abusing her on television on June 4, the day votes were counted for the Lok Sabha polls. Jairam Ramesh and Khera had made remarks on the issue on X.

Senior Advocate Maninder Singh appeared for Rajat Sharma and submitted that abusive language was not used by the senior journalist. He also submitted that the allegations made against Sharma were “baseless and are cooked up”.

Mr Singh said the show was telecast live on June 4 and no issues were raised by the Congress leaders but later, after six days, the issue was brought to the fore. He further pointed out that the tweets made and the allegations levelled against him were damaging his reputation.

On June 11, Rajat Sharma addressed the allegations levelled against him by the Congress Party. Mr Sharma, in his statement, termed the allegations a conspiracy to slander his name and reputation as a journalist.

(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)

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