Mumbai: Bollywood actor Kangana Ranaut appeared before a Mumbai court on Monday in connection with a criminal defamation complaint filed against her by lyricist Javed Akhtar, and said she had “lost faith” in the magistrate’s court as it indirectly “threatened” her of issuing a warrant if she failed to appear before it in a bailable offence.
Ranaut also moved a counter complaint in the court against Akhtar for alleged “extortion and criminal intimidation”, and her lawyer informed the court that they had filed an application before chief metropolitan magistrate, seeking transfer of hearing into the complaint to another court.
The court had last week said it will issue a warrant against Ranaut if she fails to appear on the next date of hearing on September 20.
Ranaut appeared before Andheri metropolitan magistrate R R Khan on Monday for the first time since summons was issued to her in February this year, and completed the bail formalities.
As the matter came up for hearing, her lawyer Rizwan Siddique told that court that Ranaut does not want to proceed with this court (in connection with the complaint).
Siddique said they have “lost faith in the court as it seems to be biased”.
The court has indirectly “threatened” her of issuing a warrant on two occasions in a non-cognisable, compoundable and bailable offence, where as per law regular presence is not required, the lawyer claimed.
Ranaut has been called before the court without any cause or reason, he said.
He further submitted that till today, there is no order as to why she is required to be present regularly for the bailable, non-cognisable and compoundable offence.
Akhtar’s lawyer Jay Bharadwaj termed Ranaut’s plea for transfer of complaint to another court as “extremely bizzare”.
“They have neither given any notice nor a copy of the (transfer) application to us,” he said.
The court will hear the matter next on November 15.
Earlier this month, the Bombay High Court dismissed a plea filed by Ranaut seeking quashing of proceedings initiated against her by the local court on the criminal defamation complaint filed by Akhtar.
Justice Revati Mohite-Dere had said in the order that there was no procedural illegality or irregularity in the metropolitan magistrate’s order initiating the proceedings.
Akhtar (76) had filed the complaint in the court in November last year, claiming Ranaut had made defamatory statements against him in a television interview, which allegedly damaged his reputation.
In his complaint, Akhtar claimed that Ranaut dragged his name during an interview while referring to a ‘coterie’ existing in Bollywood, following the alleged suicide committed by actor Sushant Singh Rajput in June last year.
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