Defamation Cases Filed Against Makers Of ‘Newton’

New Delhi: A criminal complaint and a civil defamation suit has been filed against the makers of critically-acclaimed Bollywood movie ‘Newton’ in a court here for allegedly portraying the Central Reserve Police Force in poor light.

‘Newton’, starring Raj Kumar Rao in lead role, deals with the story of a government clerk who was sent for poll duty in Naxal-hit area of Chhattisgarh. It was India’s official entry for the Oscars’ Best Foreign Language Film category last year.

The defamation suit and the complaint have been filed before Additional Chief Metropolitan Magistrate Amit Arora seeking direction to Manish Mundra, producer of the movie, and Shiladitya Bora, the CEO of production company Drishyam Films, to tender unconditional public apology and compensate the complainant, a soldier, and the CRPF.

The matters are now posted for hearing on March 1.

The criminal defamation complaint has sought deletion of scenes allegedly portraying CRPF in bad light from the film and its re-release.

The civil and criminal cases have been filed by CRPF sub-Inspector Tamal Sanyal.

Mr Sanyal alleged that false and baseless imputations were made by the makers with the “sole mala fide intention to injure and harm the image of a prime central paramilitary force of the country.”

“The accused persons number 1 (Mundra) and 2 (Bora) have shown the CRPF as a villain and an impediment for holding free and fair elections in India which is the largest democracy in the world, which is not only malicious, vexatious and false, but also casts a shadow of doubt over the whole electoral process of India… in which the central paramilitary forces, especially the CRPF play a pivotal role,” the complaints said.

The complainant has also made the chairman of Central Board of Film Certification a respondent in the cases.

COMMENTSThe complainant accused the makers of the movie of “maliciously, intentionally, knowingly, vexatiously and baseless showing the complainant, his organisation [CRPF] and its family members in a bad light”.

It has been alleged that the movie lowered the image and reputation of the CRPF, its members and their families, in the eyes of their friends and relatives and the public at large.