Lahore's sessions court accepts Meesha Shafi's appeal for transfer of defamation suit

Updated May 08, 2019

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Ali Zafar has filed a defamation suit against Meesha Shafi, who has accused him of sexual harassment. — Indian Express/File
Ali Zafar has filed a defamation suit against Meesha Shafi, who has accused him of sexual harassment. — Indian Express/File

A sessions court in Lahore on Wednesday accepted Meesha Shafi's appeal seeking the transfer of a defamation suit filed by Ali Zafar to another court from the one already hearing it.

The defamation case will now be heard by Additional Sessions Judge Amjad Ali Shah, who will hold a hearing on May 11.

The application for the transfer had been filed on May 4, and the court had reserved its verdict on the matter on the same day.

In her application, Shafi had expressed a lack of trust in Additional District and Sessions Judge Shakeel Ahmad, who had been hearing the suit, arguing through her counsel that she believed the judge was displaying partiality towards Zafar.

As per the application, the judge had assisted witnesses in furnishing answers during the recording of testimonies in the defamation case. Shafi also alleged that Justice Ahmad had expressed displeasure with her lawyer "for no reason" and subsequently fined him Rs10,000. On these grounds, she had requested that the defamation case be transferred to another court.

Ali Zafar's defamation suit

In his suit, Zafar has said Shafi levelled "baseless and unfounded" allegations of sexual harassment against him in a tweet posted on April 19, 2018, which allegedly tarnished his image and brought agony and pain to his family.

He further complains that Shafi failed to delete the tweet and issue an apology within 14 days of a legal notice being served to her.

He has, therefore, asked the court to rule against Shafi and direct her to pay Rs1 billion in damages to him.