A Bengaluru courtroom has requested former Prime Minister H D Deve Gowda to pay 2 crore in damages to Nandi Infrastructure Corridor Enterprise Limited (NICE) in reference to a defamation case in opposition to him for statements he made in a tv interview in 2011.
The firm is constructing the Bangalore-Mysore Infrastructure Corridor Project, a mega built-in infrastructure undertaking and one of many largest Build-Own-Operate-Transfer (BOOT) initiatives in India.
The firm has contended that Mr Gowda, through the interview to a Kannada channel, levelled pointless and slanderous allegations in opposition to the corporate and its promoter and Managing Director Ashok Kheny.
The firm stated that Mr Gowda accused the corporate of looting public cash and in addition stated that the BOOT undertaking is definitely a “loot project”. The Janata Dal (Secular) chief additionally referred to NICE and Mr Kheny as “land mafia”, the corporate instructed the courtroom.
It sought Rs 10 crore in damages and a everlasting injunction in opposition to Mr Gowda from making defamatory feedback in opposition to the corporate.
Mr Gowda’s authorized staff cited the basic proper of freedom of speech granted by the Constitution and argued that any opinion and truthful criticism of any particular person or organisation in its act regarding a public exercise or an exercise by which members of public have a significant concern can’t be restrained.
The courtroom, nevertheless, requested Mr Gowda to pay damages and in addition restrained him from making any such assertion in opposition to the corporate sooner or later.
(*2*) the courtroom stated in its order.
“The defendant is permanently restrained from making any defamatory statements against the plaintiff Company in any media, news channel, T.V. channel or in any other means of mass communication in future,” it added.
The courtroom order is the most recent chapter within the extended standoff between the previous Prime Minister and NICE.
The settlement for the infrastructure hall undertaking was signed in 1995 when Mr Gowda was Karnataka Chief Minister. The consortium that was to construct the undertaking later handed on its rights to NICE. Since 2004, Mr Gowda has been alleging that the infrastructure agency has illegally acquired land in extra of what had been agreed upon.