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Victim stands by complaint against Vikas Bahl, high court warns against misusing #MeToo campaign

The victim, however, refused to even file an affidavit in a civil defamation case filed by Bahl against his former Phantom partners. 

Our Correspondent

The Bombay high court, hearing a case of defamation filed against Anurag Kashyap and Vikramaditya Motwane by their former Phantom Films co-founder Vikas Bahl, stated that the #MeToo campaign is to help victims come forward and should not be misused. 

A bench headed by Justice SJ Kathawalla was hearing a petition filed by Bahl seeking Rs10 crore as compensation for damage to his reputation by Kashyap, Motwane and three media organizations.

According to a report in the Mumbai Mirror tabloid, based on the arguments by Kashyap and Motwane's lawyers, the court directed the victim to respond to the case and appear in the chambers.

Appearing on behalf of the victim, senior advocate Navroze Seervai is reported to have said, "She doesn’t even want to file an affidavit. I will file a statement on her behalf stating whatever she has to say."

Seervai added that the victim 'had had enough' and did not want to be 'party to this case'.

The judges then decreed that if the victim is unwilling to prosecute Bahl, no one should speak of it further. 

The Indian Express newspaper quoted Justice Kathawalla as saying, "She [the woman] should not be used by anyone. No one should fire from her shoulder. This movement is not for them, it is for the victims to come forward." 

The court has also suggested that the parties in the case consider settling the case out of court. 

Bahl had sought an injunction against his former Phantom Films partners and three media companies against spreading, publishing or republishing defamatory articles against him.

The court has, for now, kept the case aside till 23 October when the victim will file her statement. 

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