Tamil actors Vijay Sethupathi and Maha Gandhi to settle defamation case between them, referred to mediation

Tamil actors Vijay Sethupathi and Maha Gandhi to settle defamation case between them, referred to mediation

The Supreme Court on February 10, directed the defamation case between Tamil actors Vijay Sethupathi and Maha Ghandhi to mediation at the Supreme Court's mediation centre, urging both parties to resolve the dispute. 

Sethupathi's appeal to dismiss Maha Gandhi's criminal defamation charge was being heard by a bench that included Justices Dinesh Maheshwari and PV Sanjay Kumar. The problem relates to an alleged altercation that both performers engaged in in November 2021 at the Bengaluru airport. Gandhi reported the alleged assault by Sethupathi and his manager in a criminal complaint. He claimed that Sethupathi made disparaging statements about him in an interview, and he also included the penal rules pertaining to defamation in the complaint.

Sethupahti's attorney argued before the Supreme Court on February 10 that all allegations other than Section 500 IPC had been dismissed by the Madras High Court (criminal defamation). The attorney contended that because Sethupathi made the comments in good faith to advance his own interests, he is entitled to the protection of exception 9 to Section 499 IPC.

"The petitioner is a renowned actor, the respondent was in a drunken state. There was derogatory behaviour from respondent's part", the counsel submitted.

The petitioner should have exercised greater restraint, according to Justice Maheshwari, given his status as a well-known actor. 

The bench added that it is a subject that lends itself to compromise.

"This is not that kind of a litigation where ego should be allowed to expand beyond a point...this can be taken to a peaceful end, while maintaining self-esteem. Work out some settlement", Justice Maheshwari suggested. Gandhi's attorney was informed by the judge that his client's actions were also not blame-free.

"There is some fault on both parties side. Both of you are not free from blemish completely. But try to work out a settlement", While delegating the case to the lawyers, Justice Maheshwari urged that they be given the opportunity to inquire about the parties' willingness to participate in mediation. 

After some time had passed, the bench was notified that the parties were willing to show up for mediation. Taking it into consideration, the bench ordered the parties to show up at the SC's mediation facility on March 2.

Case : Vijay Gurunata Setupathi versus Maha Ghandhi 
Citation: SLP(Crl) No. 9772/2022

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