Dhoni, Indian Cricketer sues Zee TV for defamation

On Tuesday, the Madras High Court barred Zee TV and News Nation, the two media channels, from broadcasting any news about the Indian Cricket team captain, M. S. Dhoni, for two weeks.

Dhoni filed a complaint against the two media companies along with IPS Sampath Kumar for defamation and demanded a compensation of Rs. 100 Crore.

In his complaint, he said that since February 11, 2014, Zee Media Corporation Limited, Zee New Editor and Business Head Sudhir Chaudary, IPS officer G Sampath Kumar and News Nation Network Private Limited, has been showing and reporting false statements against him which indicates that he was involved in IPL match fixing and betting.

The Hindu reported that, “He was aggrieved by (the) highly defamatory, scandalous, libellius and malicious false reports and statements’ being made by the channel and former police officer G Sampath Kumar.”

Justice S Tamilvanan gave an interim order and restrained Zee TV from telecasting any news related to the Indian Captain and the IPL match fixing for two weeks.

After reading Dhoni’s affidavit, the judge ordered by saying, “I am of the view that there is a prima facie case and the balance of convenience is also in favour of the plaintiff. Hence interim injection granted for a period of two weeks.”

Mahendra Singh Dhoni

Mahendra Singh Dhoni

Dhoni also said that News Nation Network had broadcast false information that he was summoned by the Tamil Nadu police.

On the other hand, Zee TV has denied the charges and said that no such derogatory news has been telecast by the channel that can defame Dhoni.

The channel also said that on 24th and 28th February, there was a news telecast on Vindu Dara Singh and IPS officer Sampath Kumar’s statement during the sting operation in IPL match fixing. However, the news did not intend to bring any defamation to the captain’s image.

The channel stated that, “Zee Media Corporation Limited as a responsible news channel has ideated the story based on the said sting and also on the report filed by Justice Mudgal to the Honourable Supreme Court of India which was widely reported by various media organisations including print media.”

It also added, “To further clarify the said issue, Zee Media Corporation Limited has already moved an intervention application along with the evidence in its possession before the Honourable Supreme Court of India in the pending SLP filed by Cricket Association of Bihar.”

YS Subramaniam