Judge Pardiwala calls for regulation of social media, says it is overrun with ‘half-truths’

Justice Pardiwala has called for the regulation of social media, saying it is overrun with “half-truths”. Judge JB Pardiwala | Twitter Justice Pardiwala, a member of the Supreme Court bench who hit out at former

Justice Pardiwala has called for the regulation of social media, saying it is overrun with “half-truths”.

Judge JB Pardiwala | Twitter

Justice Pardiwala, a member of the Supreme Court bench who hit out at former BJP spokesman Nupur Sharma for a remark about the Prophet Muhammad, has called for strict regulation of social media, saying media trials are not healthy for the rule of law.

In a virtual address on Sunday, Justice Pardiwala said social media was being overrun by people ‘holding half-truths and information’ and those who don’t understand the rule of law, evidence, process judiciary and limits.

“A trial is supposed to be conducted by the courts. Trials by digital media are an undue interference with the judiciary. Laxman Rekha and is all the more problematic as only a half-truth is sought. Constitutional courts have always graciously accepted informed dissent and constructive criticism,” Justice Pardiwala said, adding that personal attacks on judges would not be tolerated.

“Social media is mainly used to express personalized opinions more against judges, rather than constructive critical evaluation of their judgments. This is what harms the judicial institution and lowers its dignity,” said Justice Pardiwala .

“This is where digital and social media must be regulated across the country to preserve the rule of law under our constitution,” he said.

Judge Pardiwala also said the “tremendous power” of social media platforms is being used to precipitate the perception of guilt or innocence even before a trial is completed.

“Even before the end of the trial, society begins to believe in the outcome of the legal proceedings. The regulation of social media, especially in the context of sensitive trials which are sub-judicial, must be considered by Parliament by introducing regulatory provisions “, he added.