Hindi actor Kangana Ranaut known to be embroiled in several controversies and legal tussle, was granted another exemption from appearance on Tuesday, by the 10th Metropolitan Magistrate court in Mumbai. This was in association with the ongoing criminal defamation case filed against her, by veteran lyricist and poet Javed Akhtar.
Despite opposition, the court passed the order and allowed exemption as per the law, confirmed Akhtar’s lawyer Jay Bharadwaj.
“Application for permanent exemption has already been filed, the court will hear and pass appropriate order in accordance with the law on the next date,” he added.
The court has scheduled the matter for hearing on February 1. Akhtar had also filed for the issuance of a non-bailable warrant against her, in case she does not appear before the court, which the court will be hearing on the next date.
Back in November 2020, Akhtar had filed a complaint against Ranaut, alleging that she had made defamatory remarks about him during an interview with Republic TV, after the death of actor Sushant Singh Rajput on July 14, 2020.
In the interview which aired on July 19, 2020, Ranaut had said that some of the senior members of the Hindi film industry, including Akhtar, were part of a “gang” that was against “outsiders”.
After several failures to appear before the court in the case and upon receiving a warning about a warrant being issued against her if she failed to appear, Ranaut finally appeared before the court on September 20. At the time, she had sought to transfer the defamation case claiming she had “no faith in the court”. On October 21, her plea was dismissed by the Additional Chief Metropolitan Magistrate at Esplanade, Mumbai.
On December 13, Akhtar had moved a plea in the court seeking a non-bailable warrant against the actor, for not appearing before the court in the case, alleging Ranaut of ‘deliberate attempts’ to delay the court proceedings. He also pointed out that Ranaut did not place any medical certificate on record, while seeking exemption due to ill health. Further submitting a few of Ranaut’s Instagram posts at the time, he stated that she had attended other events during the time she did not appear in court, citing ill health.
On Tuesday, Ranaut’s lawyer once again sought exemption from her appearance stating that she was travelling and also indisposed, and that her presence was not necessary as she had already stated that her plea could be recorded by her lawyer, as per an India Today report.
Despite the court mandating that the accused should appear in person, to put forth their stance as per the procedure, Ranaut while disagreeing with it alleged that the Magistrate has been harassing her.