Jay Shah defamation case: Gujarat HC to hear review plea of gag order against The Wire today

Ahmedabad: The Gujarat High Court on Wednesday admitted a review petition against its ruling a restoring gag order against news portal The Wire, debarring it from publishing any article related to the businesses of BJP president Amit Shah's son Jay Shah.

Justice Paresh Upadhyay allowed a review petition filed by one Rajesh Bhabhor, who is not a party in The Wire case. The plea will be heard on Thursday.

 Jay Shah defamation case: Gujarat HC to hear review plea of gag order against The Wire today

File image of Jay Shah with Amit Shah. AFP

The same court had on 20 February allowed an appeal filed by Jay Shah against a lower court order, preventing the news portal from publishing any article related to his businesses till the hearing in a civil defamation suit filed by him concludes.

Bhabhor, through his lawyer Paresh Vaghela, said in his petition that he is concerned about the high court's gag order.

If a news portal can be prohibited from writing about Jay Shah, then will he get in trouble if he is critical of the BJP government in Gujarat, he asked in the plea.

Bhabhor said he belonged to a Scheduled Tribe and wanted to share his views on the BJP government with the people of his community outside Gujarat, especially in poll-bound Karnataka, on the phone and through social media.

"On reading judgement (on The Wire gag order), the applicant formed an opinion that it would be unsafe for the persons belonging to STs in the state of Karnataka to vote for the BJP," he said.

"The applicant has concern about freedom of expression. The applicant, as an individual, holds an opinion that, the ST youth should be permitted to at least discuss publicly what is prohibited by the honourable court vide its order dated February 20," said the petition.

The news portal, through its article, "The Golden Touch of Jay Amit Shah," had claimed a company owned by Jay Shah saw an exponential rise in its turnover after the BJP came to power at the Centre in 2014.

Jay Shah had rejected the charge made in the article, insisting the story was "false, derogatory and defamatory". He had also filed criminal and civil defamation suits against the website and its journalists in a court in Ahmedabad.

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Updated Date: Apr 19, 2018 08:02:08 IST