Shiv Sena leader Sanjay Raut's audio recording was played out today by Bollywood actor Kangana Ranaut's lawyer to prove abuse when the Bombay High Court was hearing a petition on the demolition of the actor's Pali Hill office.
"The fact is that one of my tweets received a very strong response from Sanjay Raut, where he said he I had to be taught a lesson," the lawyer quoted Ms Ranaut as saying in the court. As the court told them to play the recording of the Sena leader to prove the claim, Sanjay Raut's lawyer Pradeep Thorat raised an objection: "The audio does not have the name of the petitioner."
The court, which was holding the hearing virtually, replied saying that it was Mr Raut's "stand that you (in the audio)" did not abuse the petitioner (Kangana Ranaut). To this, Mr Thorat replied: "We will file an affidavit tomorrow."
Sanjay Raut, a Rajya Sabha member, was caught on camera using an expletive in his tirade against actor Kangana Ranaut. He had been making remarks on the 33-year-old actor over her comments comparing Mumbai to Pakistan Occupied Kashmir (PoK). He had even said she should stay out of Mumbai.
While he did not apologise for flinging an abusive term at Kangana Ranaut amid outrage, he had conceded in an interview that his choice of words could have been better. "I may have made a mistake," Sanjay Raut told NDTV.
Kangana Ranaut's Pali Hill office was demolished earlier this month; the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) claims it contains illegal constructions. The High Court had stopped the construction on September 9 in a big win for the actor.
The demolition, the court observed, was happening "when she is out of state, directing her to respond within 24 hours, and not granting her any further time, despite written request...".
Today, Ms Ranaut's lawyer told the court: "There was no construction going on. The notice was not issued on the basis of any finding that any work was in progress. Assuming work was being done, under Section 354A of the BMC Act, the authorities have to first issue notice giving an opportunity to the person to produce the permit. Straightaway demolition not contemplated."
"Parties also have the option to go for regularization. These opportunities were denied to Kangana Ranaut as the BMC authorities did not act according to the provisions," he told the court.