The Delhi High Court has held that the media cannot be restrained from reporting confidential information of a company pertaining to its up coming projects and dealings with other companies.

“In the case of a corporate entity, unless the news presented is of such a sensitive nature that its business or very existence is threatened or would gravely jeopardise a commercial venture, the courts would be slow in interdicting such publication,” Justice S Ravindra Bhat said.

The Court passed the order while dismissing a plea of petroleum company Petronet LNG seeking to restrain a website from publishing information which is confidential and not in public domain.

“Some may argue that the press could sensationalise the facts in presentation of such information, yet the right to disseminate these views is at the core of freedom of speech and expression and any restrain would have a chilling effect on its exercise,” the court said while imposing a cost of Rs one lakh to the public sector unit to be paid to the proprietor of the website www.Indianpetro.Com.

The company approached the High Court after it found that the website was disseminating confidential information which it alleged was affecting its business prospects. 

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