HC stays NBWs against 8 Tamil actors in defamation case

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Madras High Court today stayed till further orders the non-bailable arrest warrants issued against eight Tamil actors by a magistrate’s court in Udhagamandalam in a defamation case.

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Justice S Vimala issued the interim direction on a petition by the actors, including Satyaraj, Surya and Sarathkumar, seeking suspension of the NBWs.

The relief for the actors came even as Magistrate Senthilkumar Rajavel today rejected their application for recall of the NBWs issued by him on May 15 and directed them to appear before him on June 17.

The Magistrate had ordered issuing NBWs after the actors failed to appear before him in response to the defamation complaint filed by a journalist eight years ago.

Justice Vimala stayed till further orders the execution of the NBWs against actors Sathyaraj, Surya, Cheran, Vijayakumar, Sarathkumar, Vivek, Sripriya and Arun Vijayakunmar.

She also ordered issuing notices to the parties concerned on another petition filed by the actors seeking restoration of their earlier prayer for quashing the case pending in the Udhagamandalam court, and adjourned the hearing for two weeks.

The petition seeking quashing of the case had been dismissed by the high court on March 14 last after nobody appeared either for the actors or the prosecution when it came up for hearing.

The complaint against the actors was filed in the magistrate’s court by Udhagamandalam-based journalist Rozario Mariya Susai for their alleged defamatory statements against journalists made in October, 2009.

The actors had made the alleged comments while speaking about the coverage by a Tamil newspaper of the arrest of an actress in a sleaze case and other reports after she was apprehended.

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