Bengaluru Court slaps Rs 50 lakhs fine on Suvarna News and Asianet in Divya Spandana defamation case

Divya Spandana, actor-turned-political leader, was accused of a spot-fixing scandal in 2013 in the Indian Premier League, by two reports. Now, a civil court in Bengaluru on Wednesday ruled that Asianet and its subsidiary Suvarna News had defamed Divya Spandana in those two reports. According to an industry analyst, "The two media houses have been ordered to pay damages of Rs 50 lakh to Divya Spandana after the earlier reports were found to be false!" Divya had filed a defamation case against Asianet and its subsidiary after Suvarna News showed still images of her in two of their reports in May 2013. Both the reports claimed that some Kannada actresses were involving in betting and spot-fixing in IPL.

Divya Spandana who is currently the head of the Congress Party's Social Media operations, was the brand ambassador for the Royal Challengers Bangalore IPL team in that year. According to reports, the court ruled that Asianet and Suvarna News did not produce records to show Divya Spandana was “actually involved in betting and spot-fixing scandals.” The court then concluded that the channels had acted in “complete violation of journalistic ethics and deliberately to destroy the popularity of the plaintiff (Spandana).” Reacting to this order, Spandana took to her social media account and tweeted that justice has been finally served and that she is relieved.

During the proceedings, Asianet and Suvarna News had argued that there was no direct reference to Spandana in the news programs and thus no damage was caused to her. However, the Court stated that the news reports had in fact harmed Divya’s image. Stay tuned for more updates.

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