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In partial fulfillment of B.A. LL.B. 5 years degree at Army Institute of Law, Mohali

Submitted by:


Roll no. 1561


A project is a golden opportunity for learning and self development. I consider myself very
lucky and honored to have so many wonderful people who lead me through in completion
of this project.

I take the opportunity to express my profound gratitude and deep regard to my subject
teacher for her exemplary guidance throughout the course of my project.

Shourya Sarin


“Balance between one person’s right to freedom of speech and another’s right to protect
their good name.”

In the words of Dr. Winfield “Defamation is the publication of a statement which tends to
lower a person in the estimation of right thinking members of the society, generally or, which
tends to make them shun or avoid that person.”

Any intentional false communication, either written or spoken , that harms a person’s
reputation; decreases the respect, regard or confidence in which a person is held; or induces
disparaging, hostile or disagreeable opinions or feelings against a person is known as

Defamation is the act of making untrue statements about another which damages his/her

It is a statement that injures someone’s reputation. Defamation is the act of saying false
things in order to make people have a bad opinion of someone. Defamation may be defined
as a communication to some person, other than the person defamed, of the matter which
tends to lower the plaintiff in the estimation of right thinking persons or to deter them from
associating or dealing with him.

Defamation is a wrong done by a person to another’s reputation by words, written or spoken,

sign or other visible representation.

Defamation is of two kinds Libel and Slander :

LIBEL : If the statement is made in writing and published in some permanent and visible
form, then the defamation is called libel.

SLANDER : If the statement is made by some spoken words then the defamation is called

Defamation may be a civil charge or a criminal charge under Section 499 and 500 of IPC.

Section 499 Of IPC:- Whoever by words either spoken or intended to be read, or by signs or
by visible representations, makes or publishes any imputation concerning any person
intending to harm, or knowing or having reason to believe that such imputation will harm,
the reputation of such person is said to defame that person.

Section 500 of IPC:- Whoever defames another shall be punished with simple imprisonment
for a term which may extend to two years or with fine or both.

Essentials to establish occurrence of defamation :

1) Statement- There must be a statement which can be spoken, written, pictured or even

2) Publication- For a statement to be published, a third party must have seen, heard or read
the defamatory statement. If there is no publication there is no injury of reputation and no
action will arise.

3) Injury- The above statement must have caused an injury to the subject of the statement. It
means that the statement must tend to injure the reputation of a person to whom it refers.

4) Falsity- The defamatory statement must be false. If the statement is not false then the
statement will not be considered as defamatory statement.

5) Unprivileged- In order for a statement to be defamatory, it must be unprivileged. There are

certain circumstances, under which a person cannot sue someone for defamation.

Defences available under defamation:

1) Justification of truth-

If the defendant proves that the defamatory statement is true, no action will lie for it, even if
the statement is published maliciously. It is not necessary to prove that the statement is
literally true, it is sufficient if it is true in substance.

2) Fair and bonafide comment-

A fair and bonafide comment on a matter of public interest is a defence in an action for
defamation. The essentials of a fair comment are:

(i) That it is comment or criticism and not a statement of fact,

(ii) That the comment is on a matter of public interest,

(iii) That the comment is fair and honest.

3) Privileged statement-

Law makers have decided that one cannot sue for defamation in certain instances when a
statement is considered privileged. Whether a statement is privileged or unprivileged is
policy decision that rests on the shoulders of the lawmakers.


Defamation is tort resulting from an injury to ones reputation.

Defamation is an invasion of the interest in reputation. The law of defamation is supposed to

protect people’s reputation from unfair attack. In practice its main effect is to hinder free
speech and protect powerful people from scrutiny. Defamation law allows people to sue
those who say or publish false and malicious comments.



 Manohar Lal son of Damodar Lal resident of #365 sector 24, Chandigarh, is a social
worker and presides over a non-profit organization, namely, Navjeevan.
 The NGO is duly registered under Indian Trusts Act. The organization is pursuant
towards raising and nurturing the orphans.
 The organization carrries out bona-fide work Pan-India.
 On 24 January, 2019, a national daily, namely, Sainik Bhaskar, published an article
alleging that Manohar Lal operates the NGO in order to give effect to illicit money
laundering. The allegation(s) were not substantiated by any evidence whatsoever.
 Thereby, Manohar Lal decided to file a complaint against Sainik Bhaskar for
publishing an article defamatory in nature.



Complaint Case No __ of 2011
In the matter of:
Manohar Lal
S/o Sh. Damodar Lal
36/1 ,Sector 24
... Complainant

1. Sainik Bhaskar
Through its country head
Ms. Kirthiga Reddy
Office at : 4th Floor, Building-14, OPUS Towers, Mindspace, Cyberabad,
APIIC SW Unit Layout, Madhapur, Hyderabad-500081
07799021 119

Complaint Under Section 200 Read With Section 156 (3) Of the Code of
Criminal Procedure For Registration of FIR Under Section Section
499,500 of Indian Penal Code.


1. That the complainant is a law abiding citizen of India. The Complainant is a resident of
above stated address.

2. The complainant before this Hon'ble Court is president of Navjeevan, a registered Non profit
organisation registered under Indian Trusts Act.

3. That the complainant is moving to this Court as a citizen of India, not only in public interest
but also as an affected person.

4. The accused organisation is the publisher of a national daily newspaper ,namely, Sainik

5. That on 24 January 2019, the Accussed had published an article wherein it was alleged that
the complainant operates the Navjeevan organisation in order to carry out illicit money

6. That the allegations are baseless and false. The allegations were made without substantiating
evidence and injure the reputation of the complainant and Navjeevan.

7. The national daily has a large customer base throughout the nation and this defamatory and
derogatory remark has disparaged the social image of the NGO.

8. That the newspaper clipping has been attached in annexure 4, for the Hon’ble Court’s kind

9. That the impugned defamatory article has not only injured the reputation of complainant but
will also disparage the credibility of the Navjeevan Organisation . As a general consequence,
the donations for the betterment of orphans will be adversely affected. This in turn will affect
the future of the orphans because the organisation primarily relies on funds obtained via

10. That the complaint implores this Hon’ble Court to scrutinise the defamatory content and take
cognizance of defamation in the present case and proceed conduct a criminal trial under
section 499 and section 500 of the Indian Penal Code, 1860.

Documents attached:
Regustration Certificate of Navjeevan (NGO). Dated : 30 January 2019

Appointment letter of Manohar Lal, President , Navjeevan. Place : Chandigarh

Impugned Newspaper Article .

I, Manohar Lal s/o Damodar Lal r/o 36, Sector 24 ,Chandigarh , hereby declare
that the contents of the complaint are true to the best of my knowledge and the
documents attached are the original copies.

Deponent Dated : 30 January 2019

Place : Chandigarh