PRLog - June 4, 2007 - Since 02/06/07, the media in India has been extensively covering and sensationalizing the case of a nine-year-old juvenile who has allegedly killed three children in the past one year. The press has branded him as a ‘serial killer’; it has gone to the extent of publishing his photograph with such news items along with the name of his village.
The press has grossly disregarded Section 21 of the Juvenile Justice (Care and Protection of Children) Act, 2006 enacted by the Government of India which prohibits publication of the name, address or any other particulars calculated to lead to the identification of the juvenile. The said provision also prohibits publication of the juvenile’s picture. However, only if the enquiring authority in the interest of the juvenile permits such disclosure in writing, then the press is justified in publishing such news.
In the instant case, it is very unlikely that the enquiring authority gave any such permission, even if such permission was given, then was it in the interest of the juvenile?