September 24, 2023

New Malaysia Times

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Santhara Kumar files defamation suit against Batu MP over NZ trip comments

santhara kumar

KUALA LUMPUR, Sept 28  — Segamat MP Datuk Seri Dr Santhara Kumar has filed a suit against Batu MP P. Prabkaran for allegedly uttering defamatory words in connection with the former Deputy Federal Territories Minister’s visit to New Zealand.

Santhara Kumar, 50, as the plaintiff filed the suit in the High Court here through Messrs N. Krishnan Nair & Co on June 23, naming Prabkaran, 25, as the sole defendant.

Based on the statement of claim, the plaintiff claimed that the defendant had held a press conference outside the New Zealand High Commission on March 17 between 9.30 am and 2 pm by issuing untrue and false information on the plaintiff’s responsibilities as a deputy minister.

santhara kumar

The plaintiff claimed that the defendant or his representative had submitted a memorandum to the New Zealand High Commission criticizing the approval and permission given to the plaintiff to visit New Zealand and the defendant also contacted officials at the embassy to find out personal information and the plaintiff’s permission to enter the country.

The former Deputy Federal Territories Minister claimed that the defamatory statements meant that the plaintiff had trespassed and entered New Zealand illegally without complying with and respecting the country’s laws and the authorities should take appropriate action against the plaintiff.

Santhara Kumar also claimed that Prabkaran had attended a press conference on May 28, informing the public that the defendant received a legal notice from the plaintiff’s solicitors and criticized and accused the plaintiff of bullying, being unfair, and intimidating the defendant as a young politician.

The plaintiff applied for an injunction to restrain him or his agents from further issuing the alleged defamatory statements.

The plaintiff is seeking exemplary, aggravated, and compensatory damages and for a statement of apology and retraction to be published in three local newspapers in Malay, English, and Tamil and uploaded on the defendant’s Facebook and YouTube accounts.

Meanwhile, through a statement of defense filed on Sept 8, Prabkaran claimed that the statements he issued did not have any malicious intent to tarnish the image or reputation of the plaintiff.

The case is set for case management on Oct 13.