Hearing in MJ Akbar's criminal defamation case against Priya Ramani begins before Additional Chief Metropolitan Magistrate Ravindra K Pandey.

Case is at the stage of rebuttal by Akbar. Ramani has concluded her defense.

#MeToo #PriyaRamani #MJAkbar #Metooindia

Senior Advocate Geeta Luthra appears for @mjakbar.

Senior Advocate Luthra reads a judgment on journalists having no special privileges.

Press council says you have to ve responsible. There are judgements that say you cannot have a parallel trial: Luthra.
Here is there is just a trial ..by a person on social media. It is unacceptable in a country ruled by rule of law : Luthra
Luthra continues to read the judgement.

#MJAkbar #PriyaRamani
Fair comment does not extend to defamatory comments .. : Luthra reads.
This is with regard to TG Goswami. I want to show what is bad faith.. removing the tweet when the matter was sib judice was bad faith: Luthra
Saying that my client @mjakbar had resigned when he hasn't shows it was motivated.. calling him media's biggest predator shows bad faith : Luthra
You wee trying to play to social media is in bad taste.. splitting the article without putting to my witness or theirs is an artificial defense : Luthra
Luthra argues that Priya Ramani's conduct shows nothing but bad faith.

Not one word of truth has been shown as defense..none of the defense are available and onus is on her : Luthra
It is not in public interest. There was no interest in publication. Each and every act including the removal of Twitter, not allowing me to show some of the Twitter comments.. everyone understands Vogue article as one.. is completely malafide : Luthra
She said I was intentionally misreading the Vogue article. You are creating an artificial fiction that doens't exist : Luthra
She says the onus (to prove Hotel meeting) is on me.. it is completely, completely incorrect: Luthra
Luthra reiterates that it was Nilofer, Ramani's friend, who was an interested witness.

With regards Ghazala Wahab, I want to say what is teh connection? I filed the defamation case against Priya Ramani. She has to show the truth of the Vogue article: Luthra

Nothing has been put to Wahab.. she has just given a version, story which is unconnected to this case : Luthra


I missed a line in TG Goswami that it doens't matter what any other person is saying: Luthra
Luthra reads TG Goswami judgement.
For the accused to say or prove that accusation was one which he generally heard from others is no justification: Luthra
This answers each and every point of theirs : Luthra
I am now reading section 6 Evidence Act (on Res Gestae) how my friend has relied on it? : Luthra
Luthra reads the section.
The period is 1993 according to her..she says Nilofer message to her in 2018..25 years later is part of Res Gestae.. how is this relevant? You are two friends who talk to each other every day: Luthra
These are unconnected 25 years. These are hearsay. They don't say she's a witness. You can't do violence to teh definition of Res Gestae: Luthra
When I read further cross, I will show that her version which in any case is unbelievable and unsupported by contemporaneous evidence.. is trying to say that I called up Nilofer after two hours of the incident. It is not Res Gestae: Luthra
Luthra reads a judgement of principle of Ges Gestae.

It an exception to the general rule on inadmissibility of hearsay.. but there is no spontaneity in this case. No one has ever interpreted section 6 in this manner : Luthra
It is an*
It is necessary that such statement must be a part of the same transaction or have been made contemporaneous with the action .. if there is an interval, however slight, sufficient enough for fabrication then the statement is not part of Res Gestae: Luthra
They have two witness. Ghazala Wahab came and said a story unconnected with the case. Nilofer have a hearsay statement. She is an interested witness. The WhatsApp conversation is neither primary nor secondary evidence: Luthra
With regards DW1 (Priya Ramani), there is no proof of truth or credibility.. contradictory and destroying evidence.. : Luthra
Court breaks for five minutes.
Hearing resumes.


#MJAkbar #MeToo
In the present case, I have shown witness after witness to whom no questions were on @mjakbar reputation not being impeccable: Luthra
Reputation is not questioned.. but in the arguments this defense is taken .. it not laid down in chief. Many of their defense are I'll founded : Luthra
Ill founded*
..you can't make allegations on social media without any care and caution or responsibility after 20-30 years.. after having said that for the first time that it was a fictitious piece of article and @mjakbar didn't do anything, you call him media's biggest predator: Luthra
Luthra reads Ramani's cross examination.
Witnesses don't say it is two articles in one : Luthra

Luthra continues to read the cross examination.
It shows scant regard for truth, due care and caution .. : Luthra on premature tweet on Akbar's resignation.
I haven't said that there is a legal requirement ..I said there is a norm..ethics of journalism: Luthra on verification prior to publication
How honest is your mistake when you don't issue a corrigendum?: Luthra
What kind of integrity, honesty and credit worthiness is this : Luthra
Luthra continues to read Ramani's cross examination.
Luthra argues that Ramani has raised contradictory defense.

She said it was from another article then says it is my own writing: Luthra on the second half of the Vogue article which Ramani said referred to Harvey Weinstein.
Luthra continues to read.
Luthra reiterates that no call record are given by Ramani to prove her case.

Nilofer has been her friend for 30 years and she says my witnesses are interested: Luthra
There is lack of truth..deliberate! These people in this day and age are WhatsApping : Luthra on Ramani's statement that she didn't know if screenshots came with the text box.
Your secondary evidence is false. No amount of Sec 65B evidence can cure it. It is fabricated and tampered. Primary is not on record : Luthra.
The screenshot in question is the WhatsApp conversation between Ramani and Nilofer on the night of the October 8, 2018 tweet.
Luthra reiterates that Ramani lacks complete probity.

She has still not activated her Twitter account: Luthra
If we go by TG Goswami, if it is defamatory, it is defamatory. In TG Goswami, they had said there was no reputation: Luthra
Here there was no such whisper: Luthra
This is act of falsifying things.. you know the difference between norms and legal requirements. Normally we do an investigation but you didn't. You plagiarised. You don't attribute: Luthra
The consistent thread in the Vogue article is "you". You say in first sentence that "you" is @mjakbar .. it can't be referring to Mr B in second and Mr Lincoln in third.. : Luthra
Luthra shows a sample WhatsApp screenshot to Court.

Your Honor can see the text box in the end : Luthra
Luthra urges the Court to see the WhatsApp screenshot given by Ramani.
Yes..it starts with OMG OMG: Court

This image doens't have a text box : Luthra

Got it : Court
Luthra reads Nilofer's statament before Court.
Luthra points out that Ramani had provided the link of the Vogue article.

What do we know what she was thinking: Luthra as she reads Nilofer's statament saying that she was thinking about when Ramani would speak up about @mjakbar
Luthra points out that while earlier the incident was said to be from November-December 1993, Nilofer said it was December 1993.

There is improvement: Luthra
Both people have photographic memory but don't remember the day: Luthra

I don't know what is the Res Gestae.. I don't know what they are saying: Luthra as she reads Nilofer's statement.
Now there is an improvement, fabrication and manipulation.. they don't remember the date because they know that they can't prove : Luthra
It is an alleged fabricated incident. They are only creating defense as friends who have each other's back : Luthra
No requirement of evidence of landline record, hotel, petrol receipt, CCTV .. : Luthra
When she's not active on Twitter,how did she read it ? She's (Nilofer) inactive expect on that day (of teh defamatory tweet): Luthra
Luthra continues to read Nilofer's cross examination.
You have to say when you took the photo/screenshot. None of which (producing primary or secondary evidence) is done: Luthra
It is complete hearsay, fabricated and false: Luthra.

She points out that Nilofer was not an eyewitness.
She deliberately said that she didn't read the Vogue article because it is a piece of fiction. They tried to create a defense: Luthra
I don't see anywhere where Ghazala tries to link her story to Ramani's: Luthra
We're approaching at 4 pm: Court

I'll finish by 4.15 pm : Luthra

You can do it on the next date : Court
January 27 is for their submissions..: Luthra

We will give you 15 mins : Court
Luthra refers to the cases she wants to read to the Court.

Can we get time on January 25? : Luthra
We'll do it on January 27th only : Court
We'll do it 15 mins before their time on January 27 : Luthra

Ms Luthra may argue in the morning session. Ms John can continue post lunch : Adv Bhavook Chauhan for Priya Ramani
Ms John intends to complete in one session. We don't want it to spill over to another date : Chauhan
Hearing adjourned till January 27.

Matter to be taken up at 10.30 am.

I will finish between 10.30- 11 am.

Accused side can argue post lunch : Court
Judge takes feedback from lawyers on the quality of audio video.

This was a hybrid hearing. I was sitting in courtroom for the hearing: Judge

It was very clear : Counsel
Hearing over.

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