Madras High Court dismisses plea to reject Deputy Speaker’s complaint

Pollachi V. Jayaraman filed it in support of suit seeking damages of ₹1 cr.

The Madras High Court on Monday dismissed applications preferred by journalist ‘Nakheeran’ R. Gopal, Kalaignar TV and DMK president M.K. Stalin’s son-in-law V. Sabareesan to reject a plaint filed by Tamil Nadu Legislative Assembly Deputy Speaker Pollachi V. Jayaraman in support of his civil suit seeking damages of ₹1 crore from them for having allegedly tarnished his image.

Lacking merit

Justice P.T. Asha held that the applications lacked merit and therefore they could not be entertained. She also directed the applicants to file their written statements to the suit, which had been filed for having reportedly linked the name of the Deputy Speaker and his family members with the Pollachi serial sexual assault and blackmailing issue.

Though the suit had been filed against Mr. Stalin, too, he did not choose to file an application to reject the plaint. Instead, the Leader of the Opposition filed a counter affidavit to an interim injunction application filed by the Deputy Speaker, along with the suit, for restraining him from continuing to make defamatory and derogatory speeches in the future. In his plaint filed through advocate Arvind Srevatsa, the Deputy Speaker had sought for a direction to all the respondents to pay him ₹1 crore jointly.

He accused the DMK president of having made public speeches that were telecast on Kalaignar TV and other media.

False news

He also accused Nakheeran and another Tamil magazine of publishing “false and defamatory” news reports intended at tarnishing his reputation.

However, opposing his plea for interim injunction, Mr. Stalin, through his counsel S. Manuraj, said any blanket gag order restraining him from making speeches against Mr. Jayaraman would have a “chilling effect” and directly affect his fundamental right to speech and expression guaranteed under the Constitution.


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