HC issued show-cause notice against Nawab Malik

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NCP leader continues to issue defamatory statements, says Mr. Wankhede

The Bombay High Courton Tuesdayissued a show-cause notice to Maharashtracabinetminister Nawab Malik in a contempt plea filed bythe father of formerNarcotics Control Bureau zonal director Sameer Wankhede.

A division bench of justices S.J. Kathawalla and Nitin Jadhavwas hearing a plea filed byDhyandev Wankhedestatingthat Mr. Malik had continued to defame his sonSameerand family on social mediadespite an order by the High Court refraining him to do so.

On November 29, 2020, the court had directed Mr.Malik to not make any public statements or use social media against the Wankhedes. Mr. Wankhede had filed a suit seeking damages of ₹1.25 crore from Mr.Malik for making defamatory statements. The pleahadmentionedthatMr.Malik leaking a purported birth certificate of his son on Twitter allegedly posing that he is a Muslim. The suit urged the court to grant him an injunction from court to direct. MrMalik to not post any defamatory or derogatory statements and social media posts against his family.

On December 7, the same bench had noted that Mr.Malik has “willfully breached” his undertaking given to the court last month when he made defamatory statements against Mr. Wankhede and his family when he was being interviewed by a regional newspaper.

On Tuesday, senior counsel Birendra Saraf,represented Mr.Wankhedeand informed the court about statements made by the Nationalist Congress Party leader in January andsubmittedseveraltranscripts of statementsmade by him duringpress conferences.

Mr.Sarafsaid Mr. Malik’sstatements referred to “some bogus cases by NCB officers, fraud, extortion from film actors, and (Sameer) Wankhede’s alleged illegal caste certificate. His statements are in breach of the HC order and some appropriate action must be taken.”

Advocate Karl Tamboly representing Mr. Malik told the HC that his client had not named Sameer Wankhede in any of the press conferences.

The court asked whyMr. Malik continues topubliclytalkabout Sameer Wankhede’s caste certificate being illegaland asked,“What are you (Malik) trying to do? Is there a decision on whether the caste certificate is illegal or not? If not, then how can he (Malik) say it is fake? You are continuing it. Naming him (Sameer Wankhede) at the press conference is not within the ambit of our order, (accepting Malik’s undertaking),” the court said.

The court added, “If the respondent (Malik) is not accepting the veracity of the press conference transcripts submitted by the petitioner (Dnyandev), he ought to have submitted his own transcripts.”

The bench directed the registry to issue a show-cause notice against Mr. Malik and directed him to reply by February 21.

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