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Jaya case setback

New Delhi, Nov. 3: The Supreme Court today stayed proceedings till “further orders” in a defamation case filed by Tamil Nadu chief minister Jayalalithaa against Arcot Veeraswamy, a former minister in the DMK cabinet.

A division bench of Justices Y.K. Sabharwal and B.. Aggarwal, which stayed the proceedings, also issued notices to Jayalalithaa through her power of attorney holder R. Sethuraman.

Veeraswamy had challenged a Madras High Court order refusing him exemption from personal appearance before a Chennai trial court, in which proceedings were on in the defamation case.

As a minister in the DMK government between 1991 and 1996, Veeraswamy had alleged that Jayalalithaa orchestrated an attack on the residence of then state chief secretary T.V. Venkatraman.

Jayalalithaa had filed a complaint against Veeraswamy on April 7, 1997 before the metropolitan magistrate at Egmore, alleging that her reputation had been sullied. Veeraswamy had requested exemption from personal appearance on the ground that he was not keeping well.

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