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Court dismisses case filed against Ranjinikanth for his remark about Periyar
The plea said that the actor had insulted the Dravidian ideologists and followers of Periyar in golden jubilee celebrations of Thuglak magazine on January 14, 2020. It was filed by Dravidar Viduthalai Kazhagam, Chennai district secretary R Umapathy.
Observing that Rajinikanth has stated what he thought was a fact, about a rally held in Salem in 1971 by Thanthai Periyar, which was published in Thuglak weekly magazine, the Second Metropolitan Magistrate Court, Egmore, dismissed a petition seeking to file an FIR against the actor for his alleged derogatory statements.
Dismissing the petition, Judge Roslyn Durai has asked the petitioner to approach the court on individual capacity. “Speech of actor Rajinikanth is at best defamatory. The offence under section 499 r/w 500 of Indian Penal Code alone appears to be made out. The said offence is non-cognizable and maintainable as a private complaint. In the circumstance, this court finds no grounds are made out for concluding offences under section 153(A), 504 (Intent to provoke breach of the peace) and 505 (Statements conducing to public mischief) of Indian Penal Code and the petitioner can file private complaint for defamation, damages and compensation, if so advised,” the judge said.
Umapathy’s counsel D Arun said, “We contended that Rajinikanth’s speech had provoked the breach of public peace by promoting enmity and hatred among the people in the name of religion. Even in Chengalpattu, Periyar’s statue was vandalized after his speech but the court refused.”
“According to the order, we can file a defamation suit against Rajinikanth under section 499 punishable under section 500 of IPC,” added Arun. Judge Roslyn Durai has also returned the intervening petition filed by one Arumugam as not maintainable. He prayed to be made party to the plea and dismiss Umapathy’s petition. Arumugam contended that petitioner has filed the plea not in the interest of justice but for sheer cheap publicity.
On hearing the audio CD recording of the speech of Rajinikanth, the judge said, “He (Rajinikanth) has stated what he thought was a fact, about a rally held in Salem in 1971, by Thanthai Periyar, and which according to him was also published in the Thuglak weekly magazine of that period. There is no similarity between the type of speech dealt with in the decision in Shamit Sanyal and another Vs State of West Bengal and others (cited by the petitioner) and the speech of Rajinikanth.”