THE MEDIA TRAIL
Concept of Media trail
The Indian legal system depends upon three major pillars which are legislation, execution, and judiciary, the legislation includes law-making power and executive includes the implication of the laws prepared by the legislation and judiciary includes the court which is there to provide justice in case of something illegal has happened but we generally forget the one of the most effective and element in the society that is media trail.
Media trail basically means a trial by media and it was basically introduced in the 20th century and on early 21st century, in media trial it is actually not a legal proceeding it passes an unofficial and unauthorized verdict which media concluded on the basis of their own improper investigation and unreliable information which can destroy a person’s life in the society and influence people to become unable to trust the legal system of the State.
How Media trail works
These media trails have been part of our life for a very long time so we are not able to raise question against these trails because we believe what we are watching on Television or reading on newspaper is correct and we put our whole faith on those media trail we declare those verdicts valid no matter the how wrong it is, as it was recently a heading of an article “Conviction rate for rape only 27.2% even as country celebrates justice in Nirbhaya case”,i.e (https://m.economictimes.com/news/politics-and-nation/conviction-rate-for-rape-only-27-2-even-as-country-celebrates-justice-in-nirbhaya-case/articleshow/73169787.cms) in which the National Crime Records Bureau was quoted that only in 4,708 rapes case the conviction was made but in 11,133 rape cases there was acquittal and 1,38,642 rape cases remained pending in 2018 and the conviction rate was decreased from the last year.
“Every person is innocent until proven guilty” this principle is followed by the Indian court while trial but in media trial every person is convicted even from the beginning of the investigation but the major point which was missed by the media that National Crime Records Bureau, there were 38,947 rape cases were reported in 2016 in which 10,068 were held false, which almost 26% so where one person who is being framed in for a crime which he never has committed even after being declared non-guilty by the court is still treated as a rapist because of the media trail.
As per the principals of natural justice “Audi alteram partem” which means no party should be remained unheard which give right that everyone is entitled to have a defense but this principle is considered as the weakness of the judicial system due to this media trail because if a case goes for some years just to ensure that the person who is being convicted is innocent or not? The media declares that it is the disability of the legal system because it takes some time but if a person kills an alleged rapist who didn’t even get a chance to prove his innocence was applauded and appreciated by society, Do we really want a society where law exists only in books, when will we understand that due to these media trail those who really need to claim their rights are not claiming them just because they trust the media over the well-established legal system, many people don’t call for help just because they have lost their trust on the legal system of India.
Outcome of media trail
Media trail affects our society in three different aspects
- Defamation of an innocent person.
- Question on the credibility of the legal system.
- Reduction confidence of society on the legal system.
Due to media trial, a person who is innocent can be declared an offender of the society and no matter what a court’s verdict will be that person will not be able to live a normal life because he will be an offender in the eyes of society just because the media has declared him guilty.
But that is only in the personal level media trail also affect the credibility of the legal system of India, even though the judges of the Court are highly trained and educated and take as much time but provide the verdict which can provide justice to the society but the media trail directly declares their verdict to the society even though it may ruin someone innocent one’s life as the media held the sword in the murder case of Aarushi Talwar where media declared all the persons who were alleged murderer in the police investigation, where to media this act was just a stunt to get more and more viewers but it was an act of disrespect to the victim and the society.
And the outcome of the media trial held that society doesn’t trust the legal system even though the accused held innocent by the court the media trial will declare that again the legal system fails no matter what happened in the court only thing that matters what media wants to present in front of the society by which a person who is seeking justice losses his confidence in the legal system and as result, they never come forward to claim their rights and keep facing the injustice in the society.
The power which has been vested in the media by the society should not be abused by defaming a person who was declared innocent by the Court and all the should not create any doubt against the judicial system of the Nation because any question raised against the legal system always creates a communication gap between the legal system and those who really need the justice to get the rights which they should have claimed.
And there should be a legal provision to analyze and to rectify the points and intention behind those points which they make just to get more viewers and the media trail must be stopped because media should help for the proper implication of the legal system not as an obstruction to the legal system because the power of media must not be underestimated it can change society’s situation and the approach of the legal system.