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Court of Additional Chief Metropolitan Magistrate will begin hearing final arguments in MJ Akbar's defamation case against journalist Priya Ramani.

Senior Advocate Geeta Luthra appears for Akbar.

Court to assemble shortly.


#MJAkbar #PriyaRamani

Hearing begins.


#PriyaRamani #MeToo
Senior Advocate Geeta Luthra begins.

Luthra states that she would like to read the complaint filed by MJ Akbar as well his deposition during Examination-in-Chief in its entirety.
Luthra begins reading the defamation complaint filed by MJ Akbar against Priya Ramani.
Your Honour can see the long span of career.. almost about 44 years, says Luthra says she reads excerpts with respect to Akbar's professional career.

These show that reputation that Akbar had built, Luthra
Luthra reads out Ramani's tweet on MJ Akbar.
All this, on the face of it, defamatory, unless there is a defence. When person says i have an MJ Akbar story but i didn't name him, the question is why now? What is the public good that you are claiming? What is the due care?, Luthra
Luthra continues reading the complaint which called the allegations a figment of Ramani's imagination.

#PriyaRamani #MeToo
This is not a communication in someone's interest. This is not a communication between two persons, Luthra

Things that i took 49-45 years to build, without any sense of responsibility, it was trashed, Luthra
Can you expect a man to answer to something which you allege happened 20-25 years ago, Luthra
Did anybody understand that it was a general article (in Vogue )? Did my friends, my wife understand it that way? . She says one aspect was wrong. I say all such aspects are wrong, Luthra
If there is a griveance, it has to be raised then and there before the appropriate authority. . I don't want to jump onto a political bandwagon, Luthra
My whole life has gone with any controversy.. Can you tar anybody's life without any impunity, without any evidence?, Luthra
We can't be a social media country, Luthra

#MeToo #PriyaRamani #MJAkbar
She (Ramani) herself says that the person about whom she's talking has a wonderful reputation, Luthra
Luthra continues reading the offending piece.

Can you call someone a predator..? .. I will read the dictionary meaning of 'predator' and 'pervert'., Luthra
Luthra reads out the dictionary meaning of predator and pervert

Meaning of predator...when you are referring to humans.. it refers that you ruthlessly exploit others, Luthra

Pervert is someone whose sexual behaviour is abnormal and unacceptable, Luthra
My readers did not understand that only one line from the piece pertained to me.., Luthra
Luthra now reads the tweets published by Ramani in October 2018.
Here, what sense does anyone get? Then she attaches the article. What sense does a layman attach to it. It says that the man is a predator, a pervert, the story is about MJ Akbar, Luthra
It's not good enough to say that only two things (from the article) were about him, Luthra
You didn't say that only X portion was about him, Luthra
Where is the due care and caution?, Luthra
Luthra refers to subsequent tweets by Ramani and the resignation of Akbar from the post of a Union Minister.

This is what is your victory? The test has to be bonafide, Luthra
This shows the motivation which was not genuine and bonafide, Luthra
Luthra continues reading the complaint, calls the allegations "false narrative".
This has caused great humiliation to Akbar and his reputation has been irreparably damaged, Luthra
I named six witnesses in the case, Luthra
Luthra begins reading Akbar's deposition during Examination-in-Chief.
He developed a reputation and that's why was a Minister of External Affairs, says Luthra as she adds that Akbar wrote extensively on South Asia.

In that sense, the country needs such people, Luthra
Luthra continues reading Akbar's deposition.
Luthra refers to Ramani's tweet on her 'MJ Akbar story', says the tweet has 1931 retweets.
This shows that there was publication and circulation and a clear reference to the Vouge article.
We say all of it (the Vogue article) is defamatory, Luthra
Luthra refers to Ramani's tweet on 'Media's biggest sexual predator'.

You are a person who is saying things without bothering. You are tarnishing someone's image without bothering, Luthra
I'll show how it (defence) should truth + good faith. The allegation is spun out if lies. The article itself is self contradictory, Luthra
Luthra reads out articles written on the sexual harassment against MJ Akbar.
Luthra reads a news report on Ramani's allegations and claims that even the interpretation of the author of that news report was that the entire Vogue article was on Akbar.
She's (Ramani) now saying that only one line was on Akbar. And why is she speaking up now? Even till this time, there was no reason for her to keep quiet. Is it the #MeToo movement. Is it that he is a Minister now? Where are the bonafides?, Luthra
Those who wanted to speak could have spoken in 2013 when Tarun Tejpal's case happened. She even wrote an article on the incident, Luthra
This only shows how a person can, without care of the damage to the reputation, says he didn't do anything and later says it was sarcastic. The person is ruined, Luthra
Luthra continues reading Akbar's deposition.
The per se effect was defamatory and lowering of my reputation in the eyes of the right thinking members of the society, Luthra
Luthra reads out witness Veenu Sandal's post notice statement.
Luthra reads out witness Tapan Chaki's statement.
Even if one or two persons say that my reputation is adversely affected, that itself is sufficient, Luthra
Luthra reads out Akbar's witness Sunil Gujral's deposition.
These people have worked with him, lived near him, have been associated with him but have never heard anything untoward about him, Luthra
Luthra reads out witness Joyeeta Basu's deposition.
Akbar's behaviour with her (Basu);and everyone around her was always good and that's a long long time, Luthra
Matter adjourned for the day.
Matter to be heard next on February 28th and 29th.
We can't be a social media country: Senior Adv Geeta Luthra begins final arguments in MJ Akbar's defamation case against Priya Ramani
@mjakbar @IndiaMeToo #MeToo #priyaramani…
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