- In 2018, Ramani said a former union minister harassed him during a meeting in a hotel room.
- “Even a person of social status can be sexually harassed,” the metropolitan city’s additional judge, Ravindra Pandei, told a court.
Indian minister loses defamation case against well known journalist Priya Ramani. He accused of sexually assaulting a journalist, lost the case that has filed against him. As Delhi court ruled the defamation claim was baseless.
When the #MeToo movement started around the world in 2018, journalist Priya Ramani claimed that former Union Minister M.J. Akbar harassed her in hotel room during a meeting.
Akbar later stepped down – but remained a member of the Rajya Sabha – and began challenging her in October 2018.
He had claimed, “deliberately made dangerous, fabricated and offensive accusations”. Also he denied similar accusations made by other women.
Akbar’s decision to step down as foreign minister in 2018 came after accusations of sexual harassment by more than a dozen other women.
However, on Wednesday a Delhi court cleared Ramani of all defamation. Court ruling that “society needs to understand the impact of sexual violence and abuse on its victims”.
“Even a man of social status can sexually harassed,” said the city’s additional judge, Ravindra Kumar, whenhe released Ramani.
“This is a big moment for the #MeToo movement,” the reporter said as she left the courtroom smiling after the verdict and Indian Minister loses, according to media.
“I hope this will help more women to speak up.
And stopping men in power prevents women from telling the truth,” she has quoted as saying by journalist.
The Delhi court ruling has hailed as a victory for India’s #MeToo movement. In which Akbar, a veteran editor who founded numerous publications, is one of the most prominent persons.
Journalist’s point of view
The journalist’s decision to make her accusations against Akbar praised by Indian women’s rights activists for strengthening the country’s #MeToo movement, which started in 2018.
“We won it,” posted #MeTooIndia handle journalist Rituparna Chatterjee on Twitter after the verdict.
Bar & Bench, a Twitter account that posts news about the law and lawyers, posted live on Tweet Production.
“The right to reputation cannot protect at the expense of the right to dignity,” he wrote in a tweet.
Ramani had called Akbar in an article from media and trusted nearly 20 other women who spoke about and spoke about how the minister had involved in sexual harassment over the years during his journalistic career.
Several strongmen from the world of media, entertainment and the arts have accused of having faced consequences, including downfall, since then.
However, activists say more needs to be done to encourage women to report sexual harassment and that the movement has little impact in remote and rural areas of India where sexual crimes have not been reported.