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Apex court notice to Ramdev on book publisher's plea against HC order

Apex court notice to Ramdev on book publishers plea against HC order

New Delhi: The Supreme Court Friday issued notice to Yoga guru Ramdev on a plea by a publisher challenging the Delhi High Court's verdict restraining sale and publication of a book purportedly on his life.

The high court had passed the restraining order after Ramdev claimed that the book had defamatory content.

The apex court listed the matter for further hearing in first week of February next year. "We will issue notice to Respondent 1 (Ramdev)," a bench of justices Madan B Lokur and Deepak Gupta said.

The publisher, Juggernaut Books Private Limited, approached the apex court challenging the high court's September 29 judgement.

Earlier, Ramdev had filed the plea in the high court against the book titled "Godman To Tycoon" The Untold Story of Baba Ramdev, saying the book, purportedly on his life, had defamatory content and harmed his economic interests and reputation.

Senior advocate Kapil Sibal, appearing for the publisher, told the apex court bench that there were "some significant" and "very interesting issues" in the matter.

The bench also asked why the publisher has made e-commerce websites Amazon India and Flipkart Internet Private Limited, which were earlier selling the book online, parties in the plea. "Why do you want Amazon and Flipkart (as parties) unnecessarily in this," the bench asked and issued notice to Ramdev only.

The high court in its September verdict, restraining the sale, publication and distribution of the book, had said the right to reputation of a living individual cannot be "crucified" at the "altar of the right to freedom of speech and expression" of another.

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