IPL betting scam: Zee Media moves Madras HC against answering ‘17 questions’ raised by Dhoni

The former CSK captain had filed a defamation suit against Zee in 2014.

WrittenBy:NL Team
Date:
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Zee Media yesterday filed an appeal in the Madras High Court asking it to set aside an order directing it to answer interrogatories raised by cricketer MS Dhoni in connection with a defamation suit he filed against Zee nine years ago. 

The order had been passed in November last year.

Dhoni’s defamation suit in 2014 alleged that Zee had telecast false news reports linking him to the IPL betting scam. Also naming News Nation, journalist Sudhir Chaudhary, and IPS officer Sampath Kumar in his suit, he demanded damages of Rs 100 crore. Dhoni had been captain of the Chennai Super Kings at the time, and Kumar had conducted the initial investigation of the scam. 

According to Bar and Bench, the high court had granted an interim injunction restraining Zee and others from “making defamatory statements”. Zee and co. then filed their written statements to the court, after which Dhoni filed another application alleging that Kumar’s written statement contained further instances of defamation.

Then, in July last year, the Madras High Court permitted Dhoni to deliver “a set of 17 questions”, or interrogatories, to Zee Media after Dhoni alleged its written statement was “generalised and did not contain specific responses”. Zee moved the high court asking that this permission be set aside. According to the Hindu, the media company said Dhoni was “attempting to know the evidence against him”.

Zee’s appeal was dismissed in November and so it filed another appeal in the high court yesterday, saying the order hadn’t accounted for “unreasonableness” and “vexatiousness”, Bar and Bench reported. The matter will be heard on March 13.

Betting and gambling are thorny issues in India but the BCCI seems to have its own interpretations of the law. At the IPL bidding event in 2021, winning bids ranged from 60 to 250 percent more than BCCI’s base price, and one of the new team owners is an international gambling company. Read this piece in Newslaundry on the world of betting in cricket.

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