ITAK President demands one billion rupees in damages

Jaffna MP and ITAK President Mavai S. Senathirajah’s lawyers have sent a letter of demand to MP Annamalai Nadesu Sivasakthi seeking damages amounting to one billion rupees for making ‘false and defamatory statements’ by alleging that their client together with some other MPs had received bribes amounting to Rs. 20 million each to vote in favour of the government budget.

Following is the text of the Letter of Demand titled, “False and Defamatory Statements”

We have been consulted by Honourable Mavai S. Senathirajah, Member of Parliament for Jaffna District.

We are instructed that you have made and that you continue to make false and defamatory-statements with regard to our client. These statements have been made several times from on or about 19th December 2017. In these statements you are reported to have made the allegation that our client, together with some other Members of Parliament have received bribes amounting to Rupees Twenty Million (Rs. 20,000,000.00) each for the purpose of voting in favour of the Appropriation Bill for the year 2018.

We are instructed that despite public denials by our client and others you have continued to make the aforesaid false and defamatory allegation.

We are instructed that your aforesaid allegation is false, false to your knowledge, malicious and defamatory per se and/or by innuendo of our client.

We are instructed to scare that our client is held in high esteem for the long years of sacrificial service he has rendered to the people for several decades. He has been elected as a Member of Parliament with overwhelming public support at several elections. He is also the President of the Ilankai Thamil Arasu Kadchi (ITAK).

We are instructed to state that your aforesaid false and defamatory statements have resulted in severe loss of reputation, and standing of our client amongst the general public in the country.

We are further instructed that the fact that you have made and continue to make the aforesaid false and defamatory statements during an election period has exacerbated the damage caused.

We are instructed that the loss and damage caused to our client by the aforesaid false and defamatory statements is incalculable. However, our client limits the said loss and damage to a sum of Rupees One Billion (Rs. 1,000,000,000.00) for the purposes of this demand which is limited to the aforesaid false and defamatory statements made by you to date.

In the circumstances we have been instructed to demand, and demand is hereby made, to pay our client a sum of Rupees One Billion (Rs. 1,000.000,000.00) with immediate effect, in any case not later than within two weeks of this letter.

We have been instructed to institute legal proceedings for the recovery of the aforesaid sum of Rupees One Billion (Rs. 1,000.000,000.00) together with Interest thereon and costs suit in the event of your failure to pay as demanded above.

We have also been instructed to take appropriate legal action to restrain you from continuing to make the aforesaid false and defamatory allegations in the future.