The Supreme Court on Friday took note of the fact that Abdul Gani Bhat, a Srinagar resident, is not a Hurriyat leader as mentioned in a news report on January 16, when his matter had come before it on that day. Bhat had taken objection to the report by IANS which had called him a “moderate Hurriyat leader” mistaking him for another person by the same name.
In its February 10 order, the Bench of Chief Justice Jagdish Singh Khehar, Justice N V Ramana and Justice D Y Chandrachud recorded Bhat’s statement as saying that “he is a simple seeker/follower of truth, fairness, justice and human rights.” Bhat also mentioned that he was not connected with any political party.
The Apex Court said that in view of the statement made by Bhat, “we consider it just and appropriate to require the IANS to circulate the view expressed by the petitioner before this Court, that he is not a Hurriyat leader and, that he is a simple seeker/follower of truth, fairness, justice and human rights. The needful shall be done within one week from today.”
The Editor of IANS said that the mistake in the January 16 report was an inadvertent one and there was no intention to deliberately associate Bhat with any group or party.