Puttur: The fifth additional district court here has stayed the order of the court in Sullia holding electricity consumer Sai Giridhar Rai guilty of defaming DK Shivakumar.
The court found merit in the argument of the defendant that criticizing or questioning government functionaries cannot be considered defamatory and ordered a stay to the Sullia court’s ruling in the case.
The case pertains to the events of February 28, 2016, when DK Shivakumar served as the energy minister for Karnataka. It was argued that the defendant, Giridhar Rai had called up the minister over the phone regarding unscheduled power cuts in Sullia.
MESCOM officials had filed a complaint alleging that Rai had used derogatory language against Shivakumar and threatened the minister during the phone call.
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Rai was later arrested and was charge-sheeted for using derogatory language, issuing death threats, defamation, and stopping the government servant from discharging his duties.
The whole incident had hogged the limelight in the state.