Akhtar Seeks Non Bailable Warrant Against Kangana In Defamation Case

Mumbai: Veteran scriptwriter-lyricist Javed Akhtar on Monday moved a plea before a court seeking issuance of a non-bailable warrant against Bollywood actor Kangana Ranaut in a criminal defamation case filed by him against her.

The application, moved by Akhtar's lawyer Jay Bharadwaj, listed the number of exemptions Ranaut has sought for one reason or another since March this year.

She had last appeared before Andheri metropolitan magistrate RR Khan on September 20.

"It can be clearly deciphered from the conduct of the accused that from the time of issuance of process by this court (Andheri metropolitan magistrate court) she has been deploying all possible tactics to cause inordinate delays in the matter," the application said.

It also mentioned the actor was making "false and incorrect statements" before the court.

As per Akhtar's application, Ranaut, on the last date of hearing, which was on October 21, had sought exemption claiming she was suffering from high temperature and body ache.

The application said Ranaut claimed she was unwell but her Instagram handle updates of November 15 showed she was "actively involved" in the shooting of her forthcoming films.

The actor had also submitted, through her lawyer, that she was in the process of challenging the chief metropolitan magistrate (CMM) court's dismissal order of her transfer petition.

The application stated that Ranaut had not filed any plea as yet challenging the CMM court's order.

"In other words, the present case could not proceed further after the issuance of process owing to the willful and deliberate absence of the accused solely designed to derail the proceedings and to cause incalculable hardships to the complainant," the application further said.

The court has kept the application pending and asked Kangana Ranaut's lawyer to file their reply on January 4, the next date of hearing.

The court also directed her lawyer to ensure the actor's presence on the next hearing.

Earlier, a chief metropolitan magistrate had rejected Ranaut's petition seeking transfer of the criminal defamation case. She had moved the plea saying she had "lost faith" in the magistrate's court hearing the case, as it had indirectly "threatened" to issue a warrant if she failed to appear before it in a bailable offence.

Akhtar (76) had filed the complaint in the Andheri court in November, 2020 claiming Ranaut had made defamatory statements against him in a television interview.

He claimed the actor had dragged in his name while referring to a "coterie" existing in Bollywood, following the alleged suicide by actor Sushant Singh Rajput in June last year.

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