Changanassery (Kottayam): NSS general secretary G. Sukumaran Nair on Saturday filed a defamation case at the Munsif Court, Changanassery, against the Chandrika, Indian Union Muslim League (IUML) organ, for the derogatory remarks published in the daily.
The NSS had earlier sent a notice to the daily asking its Printer and Editor to apologise or else pay Rs one crore as compensation. Following it, the daily had expressed regret for publishing a write-up. But, the reply was not termed satisfactory by the NSS leaders.
The daily, in a weekly column, had carried the piece attacking the NSS and Sukumaran Nair for his ‘controversial’ stand on several issues in the state politics. After running down Nair, who has been accusing the Oommen Chandy government of following a policy of communal appeasement, the article said the NSS leader's utterances would only help create communal divisions.
In an explanation, published on its front page, the Chief Editor of the daily clarified that the controversial piece that appeared on its Sunday edition was penned by a guest-columnist, who is a "Left fellow-traveller."
"Neither the Muslim League nor Chandrika has any hate or enmity towards Sukumaran Nair or the NSS... As an institution that has always laid great emphasis on communal harmony, we regret if the write-up has pained the NSS or its General Secretary," it said.
The Editor's explanation, however, said the daily could not agree with the view that Chandrika could not exercise its freedom to criticise political and community leaders in a lighter vein when other media including television channels exercise that right without any restrain.
Reacting to Chandrika's explanation, Sukumaran Nair had said the matter was not going to be settled by a mere expression of regret.