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Sunday, February 28, 2021

#MeToo campaign: Delhi court defers verdict on MJ Akbar’s defamation case against Priya Ramani to February 17

Ramani, the first woman to accuse MJ Akbar of sexual harassment during the #MeToo campaign, in an article in 2017 and a tweet in 2018, had alleged that the former Minister of State for External Affairs had sexually harassed her during a job interview in 1994.

By: Express Web Desk | New Delhi |
Updated: February 10, 2021 3:01:30 pm
M J Akbar, M J Akbar #metoo case, priya ramani, priya ramani mj akbar case, mj akbar case sexual assault case, india #metoo movement, Delhi high court, india news, indian expressMJ Akbar and Priya Ramani. (File)

A Delhi court on Wednesday deferred to February 17 the verdict on the criminal defamation case filed against journalist Priya Ramani by former union minister MJ Akbar, news agency PTI reported.

The editor-turned-politician had filed the suit against Ramani on October 15, 2018 for allegedly defaming him by accusing him of sexual misconduct decades ago when he was a journalist.

On February 1, Additional Chief Metropolitan Magistrate Ravindra Kumar had reserved the judgment after Akbar as well as Ramani completed their arguments.

Ramani, the first woman to accuse MJ Akbar of sexual harassment during the #MeToo campaign, in an article in 2017 and a tweet in 2018, had alleged that the former Minister of State for External Affairs had sexually harassed her during a job interview in 1994.

Over 20 women accused Akbar of sexually harassment during the time they had worked with him as journalists. He has, however, termed the allegations “false, fabricated and deeply distressing” while stressing that he was taking appropriate legal action against them.

He was forced to resign from the Union Cabinet October 17, 2018.

Akbar, last month, had told a Delhi court through his lawyers that Ramani “deliberately, intentionally, maliciously” destroyed evidence by deleting the Twitter account.

In an earlier hearing, the former Union Minister had also stated that his reputation was harmed by journalist Priya Ramani as she instigated and ignited the flame first when she accused him of sexual misconduct. Prior to that, he also informed the Delhi court that Ramani called him “media’s biggest sexual predator” without any investigation or basis.

With PTI inputs

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