Chennai: The Madras High Court today stayed further proceedings in 18 defamation cases filed by the Tamil Nadu government against Tamil bi-weekly 'Nakkheeran' Editor R R Gopal.
Justice P N Prakash ordered the stay while admitting petitions filed by Gopal seeking quashing of the criminal defamation cases filed against him since 2006 and pending in the trial court.
The cases were filed over certain "defamatory" articles published in his magazine.
Gopal moved the high court in line with the Supreme Court's direction while dismissing a batch of petitions, including one by him, challenging the validity of IPC Section 499 under which defamation cases are filed.
Upholding the legality of defamation provision, the apex court in its May 13 judgement has alsoo given liberty to the petitioners before it to approach high courts concerned for relief.
The high court had recently stayed the defamation proceedings against BJP leader Subramanian Swamy and DMDK chief Vijayakanth pending in the trial courts.