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Mumbai Court Issues Bailable Warrant To Kangana Ranaut In Javed Akhtar's Defamation Case

Sharmeen Hakim
1 March 2021 8:35 AM GMT
Mumbai Court Issues Bailable Warrant To Kangana Ranaut In Javed Akhtars Defamation Case
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A Metropolitan Magistrates Court, in Andheri, has issued a bailable warrant against actor Kangana Ranaut in the criminal defamation case filed against her by veteran lyricist, Javed Akhtar, after she failed to appear in court. Akhtar had filed a private complaint in November through advocate Jai Bharadwaj against Ranaut under sections 499 and 500 (defamation) of the Indian Penal...

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A Metropolitan Magistrates Court, in Andheri, has issued a bailable warrant against actor Kangana Ranaut in the criminal defamation case filed against her by veteran lyricist, Javed Akhtar, after she failed to appear in court.

Akhtar had filed a private complaint in November through advocate Jai Bharadwaj against Ranaut under sections 499 and 500 (defamation) of the Indian Penal Code, alleging that she had made defamatory remarks against him to Republic TV in the aftermath of actor Sushant Singh Rajput's death.

On Monday, Advocate Vrinda Grover, appearing on behalf of Akhtar, cited a Kangana's response to a Live Law tweet, to show the actor was aware of the case, but still hasn't appeared. Neither has the actor filed an exemption application, she said.



Kangana's lawyer- Advocate Rizwan Siddiquee - opposed the plea and submitted he would be challenging the order as verification of four witnesses, in the case, was not done on oath.

"You are at liberty to challenge the order (issue of process & summons) but that cannot absolve you from appearance here," metropolitan magistrate RR Khan said while passing the order.

The warrant is returnable on March 26, 2021.

Grover was accompanied by Akhtar, and other lawyers, on Monday.

In his original complaint Akhtar accused Ranaut of damaging his "immaculate reputation by falsely attributing statements to him," in her interview to Republic TV anchor Arnab Goswami, on July 19.

After recording the Akhtar's statement, the court directed the Juhu Police to conduct an enquiry u/s 202 of the Criminal Procedure Code. The court subsequently issued process under section 204 of the Criminal Procedure Code, summoned the actor, and adjourned the case to March 1, 2021.

In his complaint Akhtar says he is a self-made-man, who reached Mumbai on October 4, 1964, with Rs 27, two pairs of clothes and a few books. He was 19 then.

"The complainant is one of the most senior artistes in the film industry with his successful career spanning over a period of more than 55 years, which in itself is a rare achievement. Apart from this, he was also nominated as a member of Rajya Sabha during the period March 2010 to March 2016," the plea stated about Akhtar's reputation.

In an interview that last 57-minutes, Akhtar claims that Ranaut is seen giving her opinions on the circumstances surrounding Rajput's death without any direct personal knowledge. His plea stated that the defamatory statement were made against him during this interview.

"…needlessly dragging the complainant's name into an unconnected, sensitive matter is tantamount to extending veiled threats to the complainant, who is an extremely respectable member of the film fraternity," the plea said.

Akhtar had also cited three witnesses to demonstrate how Ranaut maligned his dignity in the eyes of right-thinking members of society, members of the film fraternity, and friends and acquaintances.



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