The Kerala High Court on Saturday said there is no ban on journalists reporting court proceedings but the judges would be at liberty to decline access to any person to their chambers and the office of their staff.
High Court Registrar General Ashok Menon issued a release in this regard after the joint meeting of the Acting Chief Justice and the Committee to formulate a code for press and electronic media in relation to reporting court proceedings.
“There is no ban imposed on the journalists from attending and reporting court proceedings,” the release said.
It said the committee to formulate the Code would look into the issue of framing guidelines to provide prompt and easy access for journalists to judgments and orders which are pronounced and issued. The meeting also discussed the issue of journalists getting access to High Court orders from judges’ chambers and their office and said individual judges would be at liberty to decline access to any person to their chambers and the office of their staff.
“Taking into account the requirements to insulate the Chamber and Office of each Judge and attached staff, including private secretaries and personal assistants, individual judges will be at liberty to decline access to any person to their chambers and the office of the private secretaries and personal assistants, including personal assistants attending to court work of that judge from the personal assistants’ pool,” it said.
However, the release did not say anything about journalists’ demand to open the High Court media room, which was locked after some lawyers of the High Court clashed with journalists over reports about the arrest of a government pleader who allegedly tried to molest a woman.
Government pleader Dhanesh Mathew Manjooran was arrested on July 14, but lawyers involved in clashes say the case is “fabricated”.