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Friday, May 20, 2022

Delhi HC asks Twitter to remove 5 more tweets against Savarkar biographer Vikram Sampath

The Delhi High Court has directed micro-blogging website Twitter to take down five more ‘defamatory tweets’ posted by American historian Audrey Truschke against historian and V.D. Savarkar biographer Vikram Sampath on plagiarism allegations related to the biographical book.

“In my view, the tweets with regard to the subject matter of the present application are defamatory in nature and there is a link posted in the said tweets to the very same letters, the publication of which was injuncted by this Court vide orders dated 18th February 2022 and 24th February 2022,” said Justice Amit Bansal in the order dated May 2.

The petition filed by Sampath contended that despite ad interim injunction passed by this Court, the defendant continues to post defamatory material against him on Twitter.

Following the order for removal of the purported tweets, the court directed the respondent to file a reply, if any, within four weeks and slated the next hearing for July 28.

In February, Sampath had approached the High Court after Truschke and others sent a letter to the Royal Historical Society raising allegations of plagiarism against him with respect to a journal publication and his two-volume biography of Savarkar and some alleged defamatory tweets made with regard to it.

In the plea, Sampath sought Rs 2 crore in damages from the three historians who have accused him of plagiarism.

Tech journalist Abhishek Baxi, Professor Ashok Swain, Twitter, and the Union Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology are the other respondents to the plea.

Sampath’s plea contends that charges against him fall completely flat and are clearly libelous and the same is being done as part of an international smear campaign in order to discredit him because he has shown the academic courage and gumption to challenge the prevailing narrative around a historical figure like Savarkar.

(The story has been published via a syndicated feed.)

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