Will you hold a public meeting to apologise to CM Stalin, Minister Udhayanidhi Stalin? Madras High Court asks former AIADMK MLA

Justice G. Jayachandran says since foul language had been used against them in a public meeting, apology should also be extended in a similar forum and same venue; grants time till October 11 for the former MLA to express his willingness

Updated - October 06, 2023 03:23 pm IST

Published - October 05, 2023 06:55 pm IST - CHENNAI

A view of the Madras High Court building in Chennai. File

A view of the Madras High Court building in Chennai. File | Photo Credit: K. Pichumani

The Madras High Court on Wednesday, October 4, granted time till October 11 for AIADMK former MLA R. Kumaraguru to express his willingness or otherwise to conduct a public meeting at Mandaveli in Kallakurichi district to apologise to Chief Minister M.K. Stalin and Sports Minister Udhayanidhi Stalin for having used foul language against them in a public meet held at the same venue on September 19.

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Justice G. Jayachandran said the former MLA could not seek anticipatory bail on the ground of having expressed regret on social media platforms such as X and Facebook for the remarks made by him against the Chief Minister and the Minister in a public meeting. The judge was of the view that it would make sense if the apology was also tendered in a similar forum and at the same venue.

Mr. Kumaraguru was a three time MLA who got elected once from Tirunavalur constituency in 2006 and twice from Ulundurpet constituency in 2011 and 2016. He had delivered a speech criticising the ruling dispensation in the public meet organised by his party last month. The language used by him against the Chief Minister and his son led to a police complaint by advocate C. Venkatachalam who is DMK’s Kallakurichi South union secretary.

Acting on the basis of the complaint, the Kallakurichi police registered a First Information Report against the former MLA under Sections 153 (wantonly giving provocation with intent to cause riot), 294b (uttering obscene words) and 504 (intentional insult with intent to provoke breach of peace) of Indian Penal Code. Apprehending arrest, the former MLA had approached the High Court seeking anticipatory bail.

Passing interim orders, the judge wrote: “This court, on perusing the FIR, and the objectionable utterances alleged to have been made by the petitioner in the public meeting, does not find any reason to grant protection from arrest. Having made objectionable utterances in the public meeting, secret communication in Twitter is not proportionate act of regret. If the petitioner is ready to convene public meeting in the very same place and tender apology, it will make some sense. The learned counsel for the petitioner seeks time to get instructions. On his request matter is adjourned to October 11, 2023.”

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