MJ Akbar's case of defamation against a journalist who accused him of sexual harassment is the latest in the list of high-profile cases being heard by a judge at a court in Delhi.
Additional Chief Metropolitan Magistrate Samar Vishal of the Patiala House Court has handled the National Herald case, Sunanda Pushkar's death, cases against Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal, cross-defamation cases involving Union minister Smriti Irani and Congress leader Sanjay Nirupam.
Judge Samar Vishal's court is the specially designated court in Delhi to hear cases involving politicians. This afternoon, he agreed to hear Mr Akbar's defamation suit against journalist Priya Ramani. Ms Ramani was the first woman to name him in the growing #MeToo movement in India, accusing him of sexual harassment.
MJ Akbar has commissioned a team of lawyers from Karanjawala and Co., a Delhi-based law firm to handle the case. His lawyers told the court that Ms Ramani's article and tweets have spoiled his reputation and goodwill built over 40 years.The court found merit in the arguments and agreed to take up Mr Akbar's case.
Mr Akbar, who was not present today, has been asked to record his statement before the court on October 31.
He resigned as the Minister of State for External Affairs on Wednesday evening. "Since I have decided to seek justice in a court of law in my personal capacity, I deem it appropriate to step down from office and challenge false accusations levied against me, also in a personal capacity," Mr Akbar had said in a statement.
(With inputs from PTI)
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