Friday, Sep 30, 2022

Gujarat HC Stays Till July 20 Lower Court's Order In Defamation Case Linked To SRK-Starrer ‘Raees’

In 2016 a Rs 101 crore defamation suit was filed by family members of slain gangster Abdul Latif on whose life the movie 'Raees' was reportedly based.

Shah Rukh Khan
Shah Rukh Khan Instagram

The Gujarat High Court has granted a stay till July 20 on a lower court's order challenged by Bollywood superstar Shah Rukh Khan and producers of the film ‘Raees’ in a Rs 101 crore defamation suit filed by family members of slain gangster Abdul Latif on whose life the movie was reportedly based.

In an order on Monday, Justice Umesh Trivedi granted till July 20 a stay on the lower court's order, which has been challenged by Khan, actor Farhan Akhtar, filmmaker Rahul Dholakia, and others in the high court.

The court granted the relief while extending the lower court's stay on its order allowing the widow and two daughters of original plaintiff, Latif's son Mustaq Ahmad, to join as plaintiffs in the defamation suit after he died in 2020.

The court also issued notices to Ahmad's heirs returnable on July 20.

In his 2016 plea in the Ahmedabad civil court, Ahmad had claimed that the 2017 Khan-starrer ‘Raees’ had caused damage to his reputation and that of his father and his family members, and demanded Rs 101 crore in damages.
Following Ahmad's death in 2020, his widow and two daughters moved an application in the same court seeking to be brought on as plaintiffs, which the court allowed. 
Khan, Akhtar, Dholakia and the production firms behind the movie moved the High Court to challenge the lower court's order. Khan's lawyer Salik Thakore opposed the lower court's order allowing Ahmad's widow and two daughters — his legal heirs — to be joined as plaintiffs by submitting that the action in damages dies with the person.

Ahmad, in his plea, had claimed that when the script was being researched, his family members were consulted and the producers had also advertised that the film was based on Latif's life.
The film is directed by Dholakia and stars Khan, Nawazuddin Siddiqui and Mahira Khan. It tells the story of Abdul Latif, a bootlegger who operated in 1980s Gujarat.
Latif, wanted in dozens of cases of murder, kidnapping and bootlegging, was said to be a part of Dawood Ibrahim's gang. He was arrested in 1995 and killed by the police in 1997 while trying to escape from Sabarmati Jail in Ahmedabad. 

[With Inputs From PTI]