Page:Anuradha Bhasin vs Union of India and Ors.pdf/126

This page needs to be proofread.

plea of the respondent on the ground of lack of evidence to establish such a claim. The Court observed that:

"Allegations of a subjective "chill" are not an adequate substitute for a claim of specific present objective harm or a threat of specific future harm."

Therefore, to say that the aforesaid restrictions were unconstitutional because it has a chilling effect on the freedom of press generally is to say virtually nothing at all or is saying something that is purely speculative, unless evidence is brought before the Court to enable it to give a clear finding, which has not been placed on record in the present case. [refer to Clapper v Amnesty Int'l, USA, 568 U.S. 113 (2013)]

151. In this context, one possible test of chilling effect is comparative harm. In this frame­work, the Court is required to see whether the impugned restrictions, due to their broad­based nature, have had a restrictive effect on similarly placed individuals during the period. It is the contention of the Petitioner that she was not able to publish her newspaper from 06­-08­-2019 to 11­-10­-2019. However, no evidence was put forth to establish that such other individuals were also restricted in publishing newspapers in the