The 25th Metropolitan Magistrate Court of Mazgaon, Mumbai, has issued a notice to Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) leader Nawab Malik in a defamation complaint filed by BJP leader Mohit Bharatiya. Malik has been summoned by the court on December 30.
Metropolitan Magistrate PI Mokashi observed that Malik had made defamatory statements against Bharatiya and it will be available for viewing by the public at large.
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“It is also prima facie proved by the complainant (Bharatiya) that the words spoken by Malik were such that it has harmed his reputation,” the order states.
Bharatiya alleged in the complaint that Malik had “grossly misused his dominant position to defame him and his family with highly speculative arguments without any evidence to substantiate his alleged malicious claims.”
In the complaint filed through advocate Faiz Merchant, Bharatiya pleaded for the issuance of process against Malik under Section 190 of the Criminal Procedure Code for offences under Section 499 punishable under Section 500 of the Indian Penal Code.
The criminal complaint filed by Bharatiya raised grievances against a press conference held by Malik on November 7. Malik allegedly made defamatory and derogatory statements to tarnish Bharatiya’s reputation.
Bharatiya had previously filed a criminal complaint against Malik for making allegedly defamatory statements against him and his brother-in-law. Malik had alleged that the “Narcotics Control Bureau (NCB) is acting under influence of BJP.”
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The court had issued a notice and Malik had appeared and was subsequently granted bail by the court. However, the accused (Malik) restored to a campaign via social media platforms urging political workers to come together in large numbers to the court, said Bhartiya’s plea.
The accused has made false and defamatory allegations against the complainant after stepping out of the court premises by alleging in an interview that Bhartiya was involved in a fraud and this was all said without any evidence, said Merchant to the court.
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Bharatiya issued a legal notice to Malik demanding a public apology. However, that did not deter Malik who continued making false allegations. Merchant informed the court that Malik remained undeterred despite the court’s cognisance of the criminal complaints against him. The allegations levelled by Malik were false and did not hold water, he added.