Mumbai: Lawyer Convicted Of Defamation Against IPS Officer, Sentenced To One Month Imprisonment

Mumbai: Lawyer Convicted Of Defamation Against IPS Officer, Sentenced To One Month Imprisonment

The court also relied on the report submitted by the Khandala police which said that at no point they were probing the role of Prasanna.

FPJ News ServiceUpdated: Friday, June 28, 2024, 11:28 PM IST
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 The Metropolitan Magistrate court on Friday convicted two lawyers Naveen Chomal in a defamation case filed by senior IPS officer KMM Prasanna over the allegations of formers involvement in the alleged drug racket involving police constable Dharmadhikari Kalokhe.

The court has sentenced the Chomal to one month imprisonment and fine of Rs 5000. The sentence was however suspended for them to challenge the verdict before the higher court.

Kalokhe, was arrested on March 9, 2015 after 110 kg of mephedrone drug was seized from his residence in a village in Satara. Later, the next day, 12 kg of mephedrone, was seized from his locked cupboard at the Marine Drive police station. He was however acquitted after the contraband seized was not mephedrone or any other narcotic substance.

However, after his arrest when Kalokhe was produced before the court his lawyers Chomal and Wani represented him. During the arguments being the defence lawyers they argued that case was primarily probed by Satara police who is also probing role of customs officer. They also argued that Kalokhe was interrogated about the role of Prasanna in the case. 

Besides, the two also had moved applications wherein again they had mentioned about the alleged involvement of Prasanna in the alleged crime. 

After the alleged statement, Prasanna claimed that he asked Maharashtra Director General of Police (DGP), to probe the allegations with Satara police. In the probe, Prasanna claimed that Satara police never probed his role and the statement turned out to be false. Hence Prasanna filed a defamation case on June 17, 2015 with Esplanade court. 

The lawyers in their defence claimed that their arguments were based on the instructions given by Kalokhe. However, the two had not examined Kalokhe as their defence witness. The court said, "the best possible option for them was to examine Kalokhe to substantiate that the application was prepared at the instructions of Kalokhe and that the said Kalokhe was actually being interrogated about the complainant therein."

"Even if it is assumed that, the contents of application were mentioned at the instructions of accused Kalokhe, present accused being advocate and officer of court was expected to maintain the composure and should not have mentioned the name in particular without there being any proof in support of his claim, the court said adding that, "Moreover, looking into the purport of application naming present complainant was completely unnecessary. Particularly when there is not a whisper about role of present complainant in said crime in the records of Khandala Police Station."

The court also relied on the report submitted by the Khandala police which said that at no point they were probing the role of Prasanna. Hence the court said, "Therefore it is apparent that, allegations leveled against present complainant were without any basis and were mentioned in application with ulterior motive most probably to influence the investigation."

Lawyer Jayesh Wani had settled the case with Prasanna

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