Nationalist Congress Party spokesperson Nawab Malik on Thursday told the Bombay High Court that he will not make any statements against Dhyandev Wankhede, the father of Narcotics Control Bureau zonal director Sameer Wankhede, and his family till December 9, Bar and Bench reported.
Malik made the statement after a division bench headed by Justice SJ Kathawalla said that if he does not give such an assurance, the court will pass an order to ensure it.
The division bench was hearing an appeal by Dhyandev Wankhede against a court order that refused to restrain Malik from making statements against his family.
Dhyandev Wankhede had filed a defamation case against the NCP leader on Wednesday.
At Thursday’s hearing, Dhyandev Wankhede’s senior advocate Birendra Saraf said that although a single judge had refused interim relief, the court had observed that Malik’s statements appeared to be driven by a malicious intent.
Saraf added that apart from Sameer Wankhede, none of the other family members were public officials.
“Is it possible that anyone can mudsling like that?” Live Law quoted the advocate as saying. “Social media handles have become platforms for firing loose cannons, where anyone can say anything.”
Justice Kathawalla questioned why Malik had been making allegations without filing an official complaint. He also took note of Dhyandev Wankhede’s statement that the NCP leader’s son-in-law Sameer Khan had been jailed for eight months in an alleged drugs case.
“What is this media publicity he wants everyday?” the judge asked, according to Live Law. “Especially after his son-in-law’s arrest...He is a minister, does it befit him to do all this?”
After the court’s observations, Malik’s lawyer Karl Tamboly said that his client will not make any statements about Dhyandev Wankhede and his family till December 9. The lawyer added that the Nationalist Congress Party leader will file an appeal against adverse observations that the single judge made against him.
Allegations against Sameer Wankhede
Malik has accused Sameer Wankhede of being part of an extortion racket linked to drug cases against Bollywood actors. The Nationalist Congress Party leader has also alleged that the agency’s officer was part of a plan by a Bharatiya Janata Party member to kidnap Aryan Khan.
Following the allegations, Dhyandev Wankhede had told the High Court that Malik, through press releases, interviews and Twitter, had made “tortious and defamatory remarks” about his son.
On November 9, Malik told the Bombay High Court that the defamation suit filed by Dhyandev Wankhede was an attempt to cover up the irregularities committed by the Narcotics Control Bureau officer.