NEW DELHI (TIP): The Supreme Court on September 4 rejected a plea by CBI Director Ranjit Sinha to restrain the press from reporting information purported to be from a visitors’ diary of his residence, saying the court did not have any control over it.

A bench of justices H L Dattu and S A Bobde, however, said that they expected that the press would act in a responsible manner in the sensitive matter. The CBI director has found himself in soup after news reports emerged alleging that he has been frequently meeting 2G spectrum scam accused, besides entertaining other people being probed by the agency as well as the Income Tax department in different cases. The court, however, allowed advocate Prashant Bhushan to file a supplementary affidavit relating to the issue of several 2G scam accused frequently visiting Sinha’s residence at Janpath here on the basis of purported copy of visitors’ register. Bhushan has sought recusal of Sinha from interfering in the 2G case.

As the bench assembled to take up the allegations against Sinha, senior advocate Vikas Singh, representing the CBI director, pointed out that in spite of the apex court’s order on Tuesday to keep all the materials in sealed cover, the information about alleged visitors were leaked to the press. “It is question of right to privacy and reputation of individuals.

It is a matter of reputation of important functionary of the government,” he said, urging the court to bar the press from further publishing the details. To this, the bench said, “We expect the people to respect (our order) till the time we are hearing the matter; sometimes, it (press) oversteps, everybody is doing his job.” At the outset, the court said that it has gone through the materials relating to Sinha’s visitors and asked Bhushan to state everything in the form of an affidavit.

The bench said it would hear the matter on Monday. Singh, however, insisted saying that the pendency of matter would further aggravate the situation the way press was going about it. He also urged the court not to take up the affidavit until Bhushan revealed the source of information and its veracity was not ascertained.