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Supreme Court stays IT Rules challenges before High Courts

This was based on a transfer petition filed by the government in July 2021.

The Supreme Court of India stayed High Court proceedings in cases that challenge the Information Technology (Intermediary Guidelines and Digital Media Ethics Code) Rules, 2021 and the Cable TV Networks (Amendment) Rules 2021 on May 9, according to a Bar and Bench report. "We direct stay of further proceedings pending before the high courts in the respective cases or to be filed hereafter until the next date of hearing involving a challenge to the IT Rules or Cable TV (Amendment) Rules, which are the subject matter of proceedings in these cases." – SC bench of Justices AM Khanwilkar and Abhay S Oka The bench was hearing a plea by the central government to transfer IT Rules petitions being heard by various High Courts to the apex court. However, it has not stayed the interim orders already passed by these courts with respect to the IT Rules. "We are not touching any interim orders today... we will see on May 19, 2022", Justice Khanwilkar told advocate Vrinda Bhandari appearing for news publication LiveLaw. The Supreme Court also asked Solicitor General Tushar Mehta to prepare a chart that categorises the cases pending before it so that similar matters can be heard together. These categories are: Cases challenging the IT Rules Cases challenging the Cable TV amendment rules Article 32 petitions seeking directions for evolving mechanisms that touch upon the IT Rules The outcome of these hearings will decide how internet intermediaries, which include platforms and social media, will be governed in India. A look at IT Rules…

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