Judiciary vs. Media
The reach of the media, in the present times of 24-hour channels, is to almost every nook and corner of the world. Further, a large number of people believe as correct that it appears in media, print or electronic. It is also necessary to always bear in mind that the judiciary is the last resort of redressal for the resolution of disputes between the State and the subject, high and low.
The confidence of the people in the institution of the judiciary is necessary to be preserved at any cost. That is its main asset. Loss of confidence in the institution of the judiciary would be the end of rule of law. Therefore, any act which has such a tendency deserves to be firmly curbed. For rule of law and an orderly society, a free responsible press and an independent judiciary are both indispensable. Both have to be, therefore, protected.
The judgments of courts are public documents and can be commented upon, analyzed, and criticized, but it has to be in a dignified manner without attributing motives. Before placing it before the public, whether on print or electronic media, all concerned have to see whether any such criticism has crossed the limits as aforesaid and if it has, then resist every temptation to make it public.
In every case, it would be no answer to plead that the publication, publisher, editor or other concerned did not know or it was done in haste. Some mechanisms may have to be devised to check the publication which has the tendency to undermine the institution of the judiciary.