Katju faces ire of PCI members; defers adoption of 2 reports

Markandey Katju faced a stormy session in PCI meeting when members of the body forced him to defer adoption of reports on the Faizabad riots.

Updated: Feb 18, 2013, 23:26 PM IST

New Delhi: Markandey Katju on Monday faced a stormy session in the Press Council of India meeting when members of the body forced him to defer adoption of reports on the Faizabad riots and the alleged muffling of media in Bihar.

Sources said Katju faced opposition from PCI members when he suggested that a report by a team sent by him to look into the reasons for the recent riots in Faizabad be adopted by them.

Some members also insisted that this issue does not fall within the domain of the Press Council of India. They said the report should confine itself to the role of the media in the reporting of the riots. Some members also maintained that not just the Faizabad riots but other such events of the recent past should also be included in the report.

Members also objected to the adoption of another report on the issue of alleged harassment of media in Bihar under JD(U)-BJP rule. They said such reports have also come from states like Kerala, Haryana, Andhra Pradesh and Jammu and Kashmir, among other states.

These objections by members come against the backdrop of the war of words between Katju and the BJP over his criticism of the Gujarat and Bihar government where the saffron party is in power.

Some members also expressed their reservation over Katju making statements on political issues and leakage of such reports to the media even before they are discussed by PCI.

"Katju deferred the adoption of the two reports and also announced that such reports should not be shared with the press till PCI decides on their fate," the sources said.

Katju could not be reached for his version despite repeated calls and messages on his mobile.