Only aggrieved person can file defamation case: HC

Only aggrieved person can file defamation case: HC

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Dhaka, Dec 5 – A High Court bench yesterday observed that only the person who has been aggrieved by any defamatory comment can file a defamation case in that regard in accordance with the law.“There is no scope for any other person, other than the aggrieved one, to file a defamation case,” the High Court bench comprising Justice Md Rezaul Haque and Justice Zafor Ahmed came up with the observations while hearing on two separate bail petitions filed by Barrister Mainul Hosein seeking bail in two defamation cases.
The HC bench granted interim bail for six months to Barrister Mainul Hosein in two separate defamation cases filed in Rangpur and Jamalpur.
It also stayed the trial proceedings of the cases for six months.
However, Barrister Mainul cannot get released from jail following the HC order as he is arrested in other cases, Advocate Masud Rana, one of the counsels for Mainul said.
During the hearing, the HC said that only aggrieved persons can file defamation cases in accordance with the law. There is no scope for other persons to file such cases, the court said.
According to section 198 of the Bangladesh Criminal Procedure Code, no Court shall take cognizance of an offence falling under Chapter XIX or Chapter XXI of the Penal Code or under sections 493 to 496 (both inclusive) of the same Code, except upon a complaint made by some person aggrieved by such offence.
The HC came up with the observations and order after hearing two separate petitions filed by Mainul Hosein challenging the case proceedings.
The cases were filed after Mainul Hosein made a “defamatory” comment about Journalist Masuda Bhatti at a television talk show programme in October this year.
According to the case statement, Mainul who was connected to a talk-show Ekattar Journal through videoconferencing aired on Ekattar TV hosted by Mithila Farzana made an ‘offensive’ comment against Masuda Bhatti on October 16.
He tarnished the image of Masuda Bhatti, the statement said.
During the talk-show, Masuda Bhatti asked Mainul, ‘You say that you’re in the Jatiya Oikya Front as a citizen of the country but in social networking sites, many people are saying that you are there as a representative of Jamaat.’
Angered at the comment, Mainul said, ‘I’m thanking you for your audacity and I want to believe you as “characterless”. There’s no question about Jamaat link’s with me and what question you have asked is embarrassing for me.’
A total of 22 cases were filed against Mainul Hosein following his comment. – Staff Reporter

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