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Delhi Lieutenant Governor Vinai Kumar Saxena Wins Defamation Case Against Activist Medha Patkar

Medha Patkar Convicted in Defamation Case Filed by Delhi Lieutenant Governor Vinai Kumar Saxena

A Delhi court on Friday convicted social activist and Narmada Bachao Andolan leader Medha Patkar in a defamation case filed by Delhi Lieutenant Governor Vinai Kumar Saxena, according to PTI.

Patkar was found guilty of criminal defamation by Metropolitan Magistrate Raghav Sharma of Saket Court. Under the law, she could face a jail term of up to two years, a fine, or both as punishment.

The legal dispute between Patkar and Saxena dates back to 2000, when she filed a suit against him for publishing advertisements against her and the Narmada Bachao Andolan (NBA). At the time, Saxena was the chief of the Ahmedabad-based NGO National Council for Civil Liberties.

Saxena had also filed two defamation cases against Patkar, accusing her of making derogatory remarks about him on a TV channel and issuing a defamatory press statement.

Last year, the Gujarat High Court provided temporary relief to Saxena by issuing an interim stay on further proceedings related to an alleged assault on Patkar in 2002. Saxena, along with two BJP MLAs and a Congress leader, was accused of assaulting Patkar at the Sabarmati Ashram during a meeting intended to promote peace following communal riots in Gujarat. An FIR was registered against Saxena and the others for unlawful assembly, assault, wrongful restraint, and criminal intimidation.

Additionally, Patkar and 12 others were charged with fraud in Barwani district of Madhya Pradesh last year. According to the FIR, Patkar and other trustees misled people into donating to her trust for the welfare of those living in the Narmada valley in Madhya Pradesh and Maharashtra.

Patkar gained prominence through the Narmada Bachao Andolan in 1985, which highlighted the struggles of tribals, laborers, farmers, fishermen, and their families living near the Narmada valley.

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