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Kangana Ranaut’s Plea to Quash Javed Akhtar’s Defamation Case Dismissed by Bombay High Court

Actor Kangana Ranaut’s plea to quash the defamation proceedings initiated against her based on veteran lyricist Javed Akhtar’s complaint was dismissed by the Bombay High Court on Thursday, Live Law reported.

With the High Court refusing relief, Ranaut now has to appear before the Metropolitan Magistrate Court on September 14. Earlier, in July, the Magistrate Court had granted the actor one last chance to appear before it in the criminal defamation case.


Akhtar had filed the complaint against Ranaut on November 3, 2020, under Sections 499 and 500 (defamation) of the Indian Penal Code alleging that she had made defamatory remarks about him during an interview with Republic TV after the death of actor Sushant Singh Rajput by suicide. In the interview 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” in the industry.

Based on Akhtar’s complaint, in December 2020, the Andheri Metropolitan Magistrate directed the police to conduct an inquiry and submit a report on the same.

Ranaut’s advocate Rizwan Siddiquee, seeking to quash the defamation proceedings, argued that the Andheri Metropolitan Magistrate had mechanically ordered the inquiry against the actor without assigning any reasons for it. Siddique also said that the magistrate had not examined the four witnesses cited by Akhtar and claimed that the police had not conducted an impartial inquiry.

Ahktar’s lawyer Jay Bharadwaj countered by saying that the magistrate had directed an inquiry after examining Akhtar’s complaint and that the court was not required to examine the other witnesses before the trial.

After hearing the arguments, Justice Revati Mohite Dere ruled on Thursday that Ranaut’s application to quash the defamation proceedings was devoid of merit and thus dismissed.

Ranaut had moved the Bombay High Court seeking to quash the case in July. In response, Akhtar had told the court in August that the actor’s plea was merely filed to delay the proceedings in the defamation case.

Earlier, on July 2, Akhtar had filed an intervention application in Ranaut’s passport renewal petition before the Bombay High Court, accusing the actor of not disclosing the pending criminal defamation case in order to obtain a favourable order in the passport renewal case.