Kerala HC raps superstar Mohanlal in illegal ivory possession case

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Kerala HC raps superstar Mohanlal in illegal ivory possession case

Kochi: The Kerala High Court on Monday pointed out that Malayalam actor Mohanlal might not have the locus standi to challenge the order of a lower court which had dismissed the state government’s plea to withdraw the proceedings against him in a decade-old illegal ivory possession case.

The Perumbavoor Judicial First Class Magistrate Court had dismissed the state government’s plea to withdraw the proceedings against the actor and it was against this the actor had approached the High Court.

The court also was silent on the actor’s demand that he should be prevented from personal appearance.

It then posted the case to be heard after the Onam break, next month.

Justice Mary Joseph held: “The party does not have locus standi. If the state appears and files an application, the court can consider. But the party cannot do so. If the court decides that a party can do that, then so many such accused will come and file applications before the court seeking withdrawal.”

The case against Mohanlal relates to the alleged illegal possession of two pairs of ivory tusks which resulted in the registration of an FIR alleging commission of offences under the provisions of the Wildlife (Protection) Act, 1972.

Mohanlal has maintained that the ivory tusks were obtained legally and in 2015, at the direction of the Central government, the Kerala government issued a certificate of ownership to him.

Subsequently, the state government had issued a no objection certificate for withdrawing the case against him.

However, in June 2022, the Magistrate court dismissed the state’s application to withdraw the case and the actor then approached the High Court.

 


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