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Bombay HC Dismisses Kangana Ranaut’s Plea in Javed Akhtar Defamation Case

Kangana Ranaut had filed a plea against proceedings initiated by a Magistrate based on Javed Akhtar's complaint.

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<div class="paragraphs"><p>Javed Akhtar had filed a defamation case against Kangana Ranaut in 2020.</p></div>
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The Bombay High Court, on Thursday, dismissed the plea filed by Kangana Ranaut which sought to quash the criminal defamation proceedings initiated against her by a Magistrate Court based on a complaint filed by lyricist Javed Akhtar in 2020. A single judge bench of Justice Revati Mohite Dere, who has earlier reserved her order, pronounced the verdict.

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In his complaint, Akhtar had alleged that Ranaut made defamatory statements “in what appears to be a clear campaign to malign and tarnish him (Akhtar) in the eyes of the general public,” referring to an interview on Republic TV after late Sushant Singh Rajput’s demise. In July, Kangana Ranaut approached the Bombay High Court and challenged the proceedings initiated against her.

The criminal defamation proceedings against Ranaut started in February and she was given a bailable warrant in March, and later granted bail. In an earlier hearing, Kangana Ranaut’s counsel, advocate Rizwaan Siddique argued that the Magistrate orders to conduct an inquiry were ‘mechanical’.

Javed Akhtar’s counsel, advocate Jay Bharadwaj opposed the plea and argued that the Magistrate followed due procedure and summoned people to conduct an ‘impartial inquiry’ but Kangana Ranaut didn’t attend the hearings.

Justice Revati Dere had then reserved her order and said that two things needed to be considered- whether the Magistrate can order an ‘inquiry’ under the CrPC (Code of Criminal Procedure) and if the Magistrate’s action were ‘mechanical’.

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