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Report No. 101

4.11. Report of the Second Press Commission.-

Before we make our concrete recommendation on the subject, let us repeat here that the Second Press Commission1, in its Report forwarded recently to Government, has made a special recommendation to the effect that for the purpose of the freedom of speech and expression, all Indian companies engaged in the business of communication, of which the share-holders are (Indian) citizens, should be deemed to be citizens of India. The Press Commission naturally did not suggest a draft on the subject, or deal with matters of detail. Moreover, it was not directly concerned with corporations not engaged in the business of communication. Its principal object was to draw attention to the lacuna in Article 19(1)(a), in so far as that provision confines itself no natural persons.

The Press Commission had to point out that on the language of the article, artificial persons, such as companies, were left out of the protection of Article (19)(1)(a). On an examination of the Supreme Court decisions on the subject, the Commission did not consider the present position satisfactory, since the decisions of the Supreme Court appeared to leave the matter still uncertain. As we have stated above2, not only should the approach suggested by the Press Commission be adopted, but it should even be carried further, when framing a concrete amendment, by extending the protection to all companies and corporations so long as they have art Indian character. We shall revert to this aspect later3.

1. Para. 1.6, supra.

2. Para. 1.6, supra.

3. Paras. 6.6 to 7.3, infra.

Freedom of Speech and Expression under Article 19 of the Constitution - Recommendation to Extend it to Indian Corporations Back

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