Missing JNU Student Najeeb’s Mother Files Defamation Suit Against Major News Organisations

| March 27 , 2018 , 19:13 IST

It has been more than a year since Najeeb Ahmad; a JNU student went missing from his hostel after an alleged assault on him by members of ABVP. Several news articles in the past appeared about the search for Najeeb, the protests organized by JNU students demanding an immediate search for the missing student as well as conspiracy theories on the whereabouts of Najeeb.

Pained by news articles and programs that showed a link between Najeeb’s disappearance and the ISIS, his mother Fatima Nafees has moved a defamation suit against multiple media organizations seeking Rs 2.2 crores as damages along with an injunction to remove the defamatory content and not to publish/ broadcast any such news further.

The suit mentions that merely 23 days after the disappearance of her son, Fatima was herself subjected to embarrassment when humiliating images of her being manhandled, beaten and dragged by police emerged on these media outlets but she did not file any suit keeping in mind the best interest of the ongoing investigation in her son’s disappearance.

The media houses named in her suit are Times of India, Times Now, India Today and Dilli Aaj Tak.

All these news portals have run stories indicating that Najeeb was contemplating joining ISIS, searching for ways to join ISIS or was watching speeches of ISIS leaders. One of the stories also suggested that Najeeb was on medication for obsessive-compulsive disorder since 2012. As per Fatima’s complaint, these organizations didn’t remove their stories despite clarification from Delhi Police.

Also Read: After Najeeb Ahmed, Another JNU Student Mukul Jain Goes Missing

Before moving to the court, Fatima had sent legal notices to all the defendants. 

“Despite the Delhi police issuing both a statement to the press and a rejoinder explicitly and unambiguously refuting and contradicting the impugned news report, the media house has neither retracted the news report/telecast nor published an apology for the false and malicious reporting. The impugned news reports are detrimental to the public interest as they are designed to induce hate by spreading false information in order to target the Plaintiff’s son." the suit reads.

Speaking to News World India, advocate Anas Tanwir said, "This suit was necessitated because of a vicious campaign against Najeeb designed to derail the investigation into his disappearance and brought pain and disrespect to Najeeb's family."