A local court in Alappuzha, Kerala, has issued an arrest warrant against Kerala Chief Minister V S Achuthanandan in connection with a defamation case filed against the Communist Party of India-Marxist organ Desabhimani in 2004, when he was its chief editor.
A first class judicial magistrate court at Cherthala town, about 22 km from Alappuzha, issued the order on Monday. The court has also issued arrest warrants against CPI-M state secretary Pinarayi Vijayan and party's deputy leader in the Lok Sabha P Karunakaran, who were the printer and publisher and general manager of the daily respectively.
The defamation case was filed by K K Anil Kumar, a melshanti (chief priest) with a temple in Cherthala. In his complaint, he had alleged that the report published on December 24, 2004, in the daily contained defamatory statements against him.
The reporter of the daily, Jayapradeep, was also listed as an accused in the case.The one-month high court stay on the case had expired and it had directed the accused to appear before the magistrate court. The respondents, including the chief minister, had failed to appear before the court after it issued summons to them.