Arnab Goswami, the editor-in-chief of Republic TV, has informed the Delhi High Court of his intention to issue an unconditional apology in a 2016 contempt case filed by the former executive vice-chairman of The Energy and Resources Institute, R K Pachauri, against certain media channels.
Pachauri had filed the case against media houses alleging that they had disobeyed the court’s orders that restricted them from publishing claims against him about sexual harassment allegations. The plea claimed that Pachauri was being subjected to an unfair and illegal media trial and that the reports were defamatory and prejudicial.
During the hearing, senior advocate Malvika Trivedi, appearing for Goswami, submitted before a single judge bench of Justice Manmeet Pritam Singh Arora on April 17 that she would file an affidavit tendering an unconditional apology within a week. The counsel representing The Economic Times and Raghav Ohri also informed the court that they had already filed an affidavit tendering an unconditional apology. Meanwhile, the counsel representing former NDTV promoter Prannoy Roy stated that he would take instructions on tendering an apology.
In May 2022, a Delhi court passed an order in an application filed by Pachauri’s son seeking leave to continue the revision petition against an order to put him on trial in the sexual harassment case lodged against him by a former colleague. The court stated that no stigma could be attached to Pachauri in the alleged sexual harassment case, as the prosecution could not prove its case before his death.
The revision petition was filed by Pachauri’s son, and lawyer Ashish Dixit argued that the allegations made in the complaint had caused stigma on the impeccable reputation of his late father and had caused irreparable loss to the family.
The court stated that since the revisionist had died before the conclusion of the trial against him, the prosecution could not prove its case, and hence, there could be no stigma on the deceased Dr. R.K. Pachauri in the given circumstances. Pachauri, who was also the chairperson of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change when it shared the Nobel Peace Prize with Al Gore in 2007, passed away on February 13, 2020, after a prolonged cardiac ailment.