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বাংলা
Dhaka Tribune

Taposh warns he will sue Daily Star for 100C in damages unless it apologizes

The Daily Star was served a legal notice for publishing a satirical article titled ‘Cutting trees to make way for air’

Update : 10 Jun 2023, 02:18 PM

Legal counsels for Dhaka South City Corporation (DSCC) Mayor Barrister Sheikh Fazle Noor Taposh have announced that a Tk100 crore defamation case will be filed against The Daily Star if the newspaper does  not issue an unconditional apology for the publication of “defamatory news.”

They made the announcement at a press conference at Lex Council located in the BSEC building in the Karwan Bazar area of Dhaka on Saturday.

Taposh's lawyer Barrister Mejbahur Rahman said The Daily Star published an article on May 13 in which the DSCC and its mayor were demeaned. 

“In view of this, we sent a legal notice to The Daily Star on behalf of the mayor on June 5.”

In the notice, they sought two things -- the report must be removed from the online version within 24 hours, and they (notice receivers) must apologize unconditionally in the print version and pay Tk100 crore in damages.

The Daily Star published its response to the legal notice on June 8, where it spoke in favour of the article.

“As per our notice, they have removed the link,” the lawyer said.

But they did not publish a report to apologize and nor did they pay the Tk100 crore, he added.

As a result, criminal and civil cases will be filed against them if they do not publish a report seeking unconditional apology and pay Tk100 crore within the remaining time period mentioned in the notice, Mejbahur said.

Mejbahur Rahman sent the legal notice on behalf of Sheikh Fazle Noor Taposh on June 5, asking Mahfuz Anam, the editor and publisher of the daily, Executive Editor Syed Ashfaqul Haque, and the writer of the article, Naziba Basher, to pay the money within seven days of the date of receipt of the legal notice.

The Daily Star published the article, titled "Cutting trees to make way for air,” in both their print edition and online.

In its response to the notice, The Daily Star on June 8 said its satire article was described as a report or a column, which is factually incorrect. 

“... we humbly reiterate that it was neither a ‘report' nor a ‘column,' but a satirical piece, which is mostly presented in a parody format in mainstream journalism.”

“As a gesture of goodwill, we have already unpublished the link upon knowledge of the unintended hurt as communicated in the legal notice,” The Daily Star added.

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