A judicial magistrate court in Ooty has issued a non-bailable arrest warrant against eight Tamil film actors, including Suriya, Sathyaraj, R Sarathkumar and Sripriya, for their failure to appear before it in connection with a defamation case filed by a freelance journalist.

A defamation case was filed by a senior Journalist Rozario Mariya Susai in 2009 against actors comments during a Nadigar Sangam protest meet. According to the reports, a leading Tamil daily had published an article stating that a group of actors were involved in prostitution and running brothels in Tamil Nadu.

Condemning the daily for its baseless story, the Nadigar Sangam held a protest with the biggest stars including superstar Rajinikanth, Suriya, Sarathkumar and others expressed their anger over the controversy and demanded a strict action against those behind the false report.

Following the protests and complaint by the then Nadigar Sangam President Sarathkumar, the newspaper retracted the story, and the Chennai Police arrested the editor of the newspaper.

The reports also suggested, Rozario Mariya Susai has moved the court alleging that these Tamil actors had abused all journalists and gave derogatory speeches. Rozario had filed a private complaint in the court of the judicial magistrate under Section 200 (Examination of complaint by Magistrate) of the Criminal Procedure Code (CrPC) for the offence under Section 499 (defamation) and 500 (punishment for defamation) of Indian Penal Code.

In December 2011, the actors filed a petition in the Madras high court seeking to dispense with their personal appearance in the court. However, the petition was dismissed.

When the case came up for hearing on May 15, the actors failed to appear before the court. The case has been posted for hearing on June 17. Following the order, fans of Suriya came out in support of the star with the hashtag #WeSupportSuriya trending on Twitter.  

 

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