Ramani's acquittal in defamation case should lead to improved societal norms: Yechury

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New Delhi, Feb 17 (PTI) CPI(M) general secretary Sitaram Yechury on Wednesday hailed the acquittal of journalist Priya Ramani in a criminal defamation case filed against her by former Union minister M J Akbar, who she has accused of sexual harassment, saying it should lead to improved societal norms that would allow women to work safely.

Declaring that the right of reputation cannot be protected at the cost of right of life and dignity, a Delhi court earlier in the day threw out Akbar's suit against Ramani.

Delivering the landmark judgement being hailed as a watershed moment for the #MeToo movement against sexual harassment, the court maintained that a woman has the right to put forward her grievances before any platform of her choice even after decades.

Taking to Twitter, Yechury said, 'This is a very significant order by the court, coming against a powerful BJP minister. It should lead to improved societal norms and workplace management that allows women to work safely and fulfil their potential without any fear of harassment.' Ramani had made the allegations of sexual misconduct against Akbar in the wake of #MeToo movement in 2018.

Akbar filed a complaint against Ramani on October 15, 2018, for allegedly defaming him by accusing him of sexual misconduct decades ago when he was a journalist.

He resigned as Union minister on October 17, 2018. PTI ASG DIV DIV