In a major embarrassment to the Maharashtra Government, the Bombay High Court has quashed Municipal Corporation of Greater Mumbai (MCGM) notice served to actress Kangana Ranaut. The HC double bench of Justice SJ Kathawalla and Justice RI Chagle also made the stinging remarks on Shiv Sena leader Sanjay Raut for latter’s derogatory comments against the actress and also held Kangana entitled for compensation owing to Malafide action by MCGM.
The Bombay High Court also refused the Shiv Sena leader’s explanation regarding his remark “Haramkhor” made against the actress, when she drew comparison between Pakistan Occupied Kashmir and Mumbai in the aftermath of “Azaadi” graffiti painted on the streets of Mumbai and laxity on part of Mumbai Police in taking action. The Court observed that Sanjay Raut hasn’t regretted the vile comments against the actress in an interview to a channel in September
Some excerpts from the Bombay High Court remarks are quoted as follows, “Shri Sanjay Raut has not denied or disputed the contents of the video clip containing his afore-stated interview. He has in his affidavit only refuted the allegation that he has threatened the petitioner and, as a cover-up, tried to explain that the use of the word “haramkhor” was in the context of her dishonesty and that he had only responded to the derogative statement made by the petitioner insulting the State of Maharashtra and Mumbai, which explanation we do not accept.
The response of Shri Raut and the language used by him show that because the petitioner tweeted on 3rd September 2020 that she was threatened by Shri Raut and questioned, “why Mumbai is feeling Pakistan occupied Kashmir.” Shri Raut, without being bothered that the rule of law should always prevail, was determined to teach a lesson to the petitioner. Such conduct certainly does not befit a leader like Shri Raut who is also a Parliamentarian.
Immediately on the day after the demolition, i.e. 10th September 2020, of the newspaper “Saamna” of which Shri Raut is the Executive Editor, reported the demolition on its first page in a manner of rejoicing and victoriously, with the headline “Ukhad Diya”, meaning: ‘uprooted.’
The Bombay High Court also observed that the demolition drive was an act of revenge by Maharashtra Government against the actress for her tweet dated September 3, which drew a comparison between Mumbai to Pakistan Occupied Kashmir. It is inter alia stated that the Petitioner (Kangana Ranaut) who was unnecessarily spoiling the name of the Mumbai police has received a good blow.”
The Bombay High Court condemned Municipal Corporation of Greater Mumbai (MCGM) for the demolition of actress’s house, describing it as mala fide action against a citizen. The Court stated, “Though the manner in which the MCGM has proceeded to commence demolition work of the said Premises, prima facie does not appear to be bonafide and smacks of malafide. We cannot help but mention here that if the MCGM would act with similar swiftness qua the numerous unauthorized constructions in this City, the City would be a completely different place to live in the Court remarked.