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February 24, 2022
We have seen a report in Bar and Bench which says a local court in Ranga Reddy district, Telangana, has issued an ex parte order requiring the taking down of 14 articles published in The Wire and The Wire Science. The purported order appears to have been issued on the plea of Bharat Biotech, which claims it has been defamed by these articles.
The Wire and its editors were not served any notice or intimated in any way about these proceedings. At no stage were we contacted by Bharat Biotech or its counsel. The Telangana court’s order, which we have learned about only through Bar and Bench, has been passed without giving The Wire an opportunity to be heard.
The Wire will, as a matter of course, legally challenge this order, which we have not seen yet. We have not been properly notified of any order, much less a certified copy of the same
Freedom of the press is guaranteed by the Constitution of India. Like the rest of the media in India, we have published dozens of articles on Bharat Biotech, going back to 2020, in exercise of this right and will resist any attempt to curb freedom of the press.