The last few years have seen the boom of TV News channels where Trial By Media has become a very popular passtime. To add to this, we have a record number of pending court cases.
There is a thinking in the HRD Ministry that TV Channels could be used to fast track high profile cases as the public seems to be interested in knowing each and every detail about these cases.
An advisory committee was created led by the famous anchor Arnab NoSwami to explore the possibilty of journalists taking up additional roles of judges. It was observed that while journalists had the requisite presentation and interrogation skills, knowledge of law was lacking
In this regard it has been decided to introduce a course in Journalistic Law as a pilot at Mumbai University and then extend it to other universities in the country
A committee consisting of senior journalists and legal luminaries was constituted to work on the syllabus and the modalities for evaluation of students. Since the demand for this course was expected to be high, they are also working on an entrance procedure to get admission into the course
This course is expected to work in dual fashion, firstly to have public trial of high profile cases boosting TRPs and revenue for TV channels as well as reducing the pending cases in all courts in the country
The govt is considering charging channels for a part of the additional revenue generated due to incremental TRP as a “Legal Cess” . This is expected to add upto at least 3000 crores which will be used to improve infrastructure at all court rooms in the country
The course will start in the next academic year and admissions are expected to start by End April