Court Orders The Wire To Take Down 14 Articles on Bharat Biotech in 100 Cr Case

The order has restrained The Wire and its editors from publishing defamatory articles relating to Bharat Biotech.

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In a Rs 100 crore defamation case filed by Indian drugmaker Bharat Biotech, an Andhra Court on Wednesday, 22 February, ordered taking down of 14 articles from The Wire.

Further, the court's order has restrained The Wire, and its founding editors, Siddharth Vardarajan, SR Bhatia, MK Venu and others, from publishing defamatory articles relating to Bharat Biotech.

Senior Advocate Vivek Reddy, appearing for the Covaxin maker, had argued that The Wire had published articles that contained false allegations against Bharat Biotech and Covaxin, with malicious intent to undermine the reputation of the pharma company, Bar and Bench reported.


'Bharat Biotech a Globally Recognised Manufacturer': Petitioner

Reddy also said that in the past, Bharat Biotech had received global recognition for manufacturing vaccines to cure Tuberculosis, Zika Rotavirus, Chikungunya, and Typhoid.

He alleged that a proper "fact-check" was not conducted by the news portal before the articles were published.

Taking cognisance of the petitioner's claims, the court noted that The Wire continued to publish articles critical of Bharat Biotech even after the Indian government gave the Covaxin vaccine a green signal, Bar and Bench reported.

It was also noted that the Hyderabad-based vaccine manufacturer was the first company in India that had been given authorisation to manufacture vaccines for children aged 15-18, adding that critical articles published by the news portal would lead to vaccine hesitancy among people.

The Wire has been given 48 hours to remove the articles in question.

The vaccination programme for children aged 15-18 began in India on 3 January this year.

(With inputs from Bar and Bench.)

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Topics:  Bharat Biotech   The Wire 

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