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SC denies Thackeray's appeal

Written by: Staff
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New Delhi, July 5 (UNI) The Supreme Court today ruled that legal heirs of the deceased's respondent can file an application for substitution before the trial court if they want to pursue the defamation case pending against Shiv sena supremo Balasaheb Thackeray.

A bench comprising Mr Justice Arijit Pasayat and Mr Justice C K Thakker in its judgement declined to grant any relief to the Shiv Sena Chief who had filed a criminal appeal against Mumbai High Court order refusing to quash the complaint filed against him and Shiv Sena mouth piece Saamna.

It may be noted here that in 1994, in a writeup in the Shiv sena magazine, serious allegations of sedition and indulgence in illegal activities were made against Venkat alias Babru, who was district Congress Seva Dal President in Mumbai.

Venkat filed a criminal complaint for defamation against Thackeray and 'Saamna'.

The concerned Judicial Magistrate issued summons to Thackeray.

Venkat, however, died during the pendency of the complaint.

Thackeray's contention before the Supreme Court was that with the death of the complainant, the complaint stood abated.

The court however ruled that the trial court shall decide the application for substitution of Legal Representatives on merits. The writeup also contained allegations that the complainant was involved in the smuggling of arms which were allegedly used during Mumbai communal riots. The writeup was followed by a raid by the police at the residence of the complainant, who later claimed that nothing incriminating was recovered during the raid.

UNI AKS/SC SRS AT GC1447

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