YouTuber denies Akshay Kumar's allegations of defamation

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    Mumbai, Nov 21 (PTI) Bihar-based YouTuber Rashid
Siddiquee on Friday denied actor Akshay Kumar's allegations of
defamation in connection with the Sushant Singh Rajput death
case.
    There was nothing defamatory in his YouTube videos
about the Sushant Singh case, Siddiquee said in response to
Kumar's notice seeking Rs 500 crore in damages.
    Kumar should withdraw the notice, failing which he
would initiate "appropriate legal proceedings", he said.
    The Bollywood star had on November 17 sent a
defamation notice to Siddiquee seeking compensation for making
"false and baseless allegations" against him.
    The notice sent through law firm I C Legal said
Siddiquee in his YouTube channel FF News had uploaded
several "defamatory, libelous and derogatory" videos.
    The YouTuber, in his reply sent through advocate J P
Jayswal on Friday, said the allegations made by Akshay Kumar
were "false, vexatious and oppressive and is raised with an
intent to harass him".
    Following Rajput's death by suicide, several
independent reporters, including Siddiquee, covered the news
as many influential people were involved and prominent news
channels were not providing correct information, he said.
    Every Indian citizen has the fundamental right to
freedom of speech and the content uploaded by Siddiquee cannot
be considered as defamatory as it was "viewpoints with
objectivity", the reply said.
    "The news reported by Siddiquee was already in the
public domain and he has placed reliance on other news
channels as sources," it said.
    It also questioned the delay in sending the defamation
notice as the videos were uploaded in August, two months after
Rajput's death.
    "The damages of Rs 500 crore are absurd and
unwarranted and are made with the intent to pressurise
Siddiquee," the reply said.
    Kumar should withdraw the notice, otherwise Siddiquee
would initiate appropriate legal proceedings, it added.
    "Akshay Kumar faced severe backlash after interviewing
an influential politician, whereby thousands of people have
made personal remarks against him on various YouTube videos
and websites. Surprisingly, Kumar has not taken any action on
the same, however, he has selectively chosen Siddiquee to
saddle the blame of defamation," the reply said.
    The Mumbai police have already filed a case against
Siddiquee for alleged defamation, public mischief and
intentional insult over his posts against the police, the
Maharashtra government and minister Aaditya Thackeray.
    Siddiquee was on November 3 granted anticipatory bail
by a local court in that case. PTI SP NP
KRK KRK

(This story has not been edited by THE WEEK and is auto-generated from PTI)