January 30, 2021 2:10:51 am
Maharashtra Minister for Social Justice and NCP leader Dhananjay Munde and a woman with whom he was admittedly in a consensual relationship on Thursday told the Bombay High Court that they had decided to refer their disputes for mediation to resolve issues between them.
Earlier this month, the woman’s sister had given a police complaint accusing Munde of raping her, but later withdrew the complaint.
Munde and the woman with whom he has two children filed their consent terms before the court on Thursday, after which the HC referred “disputes and differences” to the mediation of a former HC judge.
A single judge bench of Justice Anil K Menon passed an order on January 28, after the counsels for both the parties told the court that they have decided to refer disputes to the mediation of Vijaya K Tahilramani, former Chief Justice of the Madras High Court, which the court accepted.
Munde, last month, had filed a defamation suit in the HC seeking an order to protect his “right of privacy” and restraining a woman from posting his private pictures and videos on her social media accounts. “It appears that the defendant proposes to publish further materials, which are private in nature,” the judge had noted in the December 16 order.
Munde’s counsels had then apprehended that all these materials may be published, further violating the plaintiff’s “right to privacy” and had sought protection ex parte (without hearing the other side).
“The relationship between the parties is admitted in the plaint and no attempt has been made by the plaintiff to distance himself from the said relationship, as set out in the plaint. What the plaintiff seeks to protect is his right of privacy as far as photographs and video recordings. Prima facie case is made out for limited protection,” Justice Menon had noted on December 16.
In light of this, the HC had then allowed Munde’s prayer for interim relief, and passed an interim order of injunction against the defendant woman restraining her from “distributing or publishing any private photo, private video or private audio-recording of the plaintiff or containing the plaintiff in any print, electronic or social media platform including Facebook, Twitter, Instagram or WhatsApp.”
In his January 28 order, Justice Menon, while referring the dispute to mediation, by consent of the parties, continued the earlier interim relief granted to Munde “till further orders”. “The mediator is requested to fix a preliminary meeting at her earliest convenience,” the HC said.
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