In the world we live in, it has become standard practice for politicians to earn their bread by trading charges against each other. It is as if they are a predatory species always looking for its prey. While some of the allegations made in the public domain are so senseless as not to merit publication, it is sad to see that the media is lapping it up with glee and splashing it on the TV screens. Reams of newsprint are devoted by the mainstream print media to publish these stories without verifying the facts.
Fact-checking is an important aspect which should not be ignored or glossed over by the men holding public office. The media should especially take great care and ensure that it is not just reporting the allegations but also taking care to see that some facts are checked before publication. Perhaps, in a dog-eat-dog world of media, this is far too much to expect. Self-regulation in such times is almost a dream when media outlets are clamouring for attention and eye-balls.
Having said that, we must also realise that if after due deliberation and after both parties have agreed to settle the matter out of court by mutual consent, the matter should rest there.
We must remember that litigation is costly and time-consuming. There are far more important cases in courts. But, for wasting the court's time in hearing these petitions, a heavy fine should be imposed on the parties concerned so that all players realise that the time of the courts is not wasted.
An apology in full public view would certainly be the solution in these circumstances.