Defamation cases: Fine imposed on Medha Patkar
New Delhi: A Delhi court Wednesday reduced to Rs 9,000 from Rs 15,000 costs imposed on Narmada Bachao Andolan (NBA) activist Medha Patkar for her failure to appear in the 13-year-old cross-cases lodged against each other by her and the head of an Ahmedabad-based NGO.
Metropolitan Magistrate Deepak Wason said the costs of Rs 9,000 be paid to V K Saxena, the President of NGO National Council for Civil Liberties (NCCL).
Patkar had filed two defamation cases against Saxena who has also filed a defamation case against her.
During the hearing, V K Ohri, counsel for Patkar, said that she is a social worker and "does not have any income from any source and survives on the financial aid given by people who sympathise with her cause."
However, Mahipal Ahluwalia and Subhashis R Soren, counsel for Saxena, opposed the plea for reduction of the fine, saying that "their client comes all the way from Mumbai and Ahmedabad, while she is deliberately not appearing before the judge and contempt of court proceedings be initiated against her."
Meanwhile, Saxena refused to settle the case with Patkar who, however, had expressed her willingness to resolve the dispute.
"I cannot resolve the matter as it is very serious in nature. She has filed false case against me. She did it in the same manner in Ahemdabad," Saxena told the court which asked the parties to amicably resolve their dispute.
In response to the suggestion, Patkar`s counsel submitted that he had made an effort to settle the matter through negotiations, but there was no response from other side.
Patkar counsel`s further stated that Saxena has filed false case against the NBA activist and added, "If we have called him a patriot then why he is feeling ashamed... We have nothing to lose and nothing to gain. I withdraw my case, let them also withdraw their cases."
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