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SC suspends defamation proceedings against Swamy

New Delhi : The Supreme Court Thursday suspended defamation proceedings in five cases initiated by the Tamil Nadu government against BJP leader Subramanian Swamy for making critical observations against former chief minister J. Jayalalithaa.

An apex court bench headed by Justice Dipak Misra, while suspending defamation proceedings before a Chennai court, also issued notice to the central government, the Tamil Nadu government and Jayalalithaa. The notices are returnable in six weeks.

Swamy, who appeared in person, told the court that Section 499 and Section 500 of the Indian Penal Code relating to defamation imposed unreasonable restrictions on the freedom of speech and expression guaranteed under Article 19 (1)(a) of the Constitution.