A Sylhet court has dismissed a petition for filing a defamation case against The Daily Star Editor and Publisher Mahfuz Anam.
Former joint secretary of Sylhet city BCL unit Ashraf Siddiqui submitted the petition to the Additional Chief Metropolitan Magistrate's Court on February 17, seeking to lodge a Tk 100 crore libel case against the Star editor.
The court then asked the petitioner to provide it with supporting documents.
After a hearing on Monday, the judge dismissed the plea due to discrepancy between the petition and the documents he supplied.
Advocate Emad Ullah Shahidul Islam, former president of Sylhet Bar Association, confirmed it to The Daily Star after obtaining a copy of the court order yesterday.
Earlier, three defamation cases were filed against the Star editor in Sylhet.
Meanwhile, a Khagrachhari court granted bail to Anam in a Tk 10 crore libel suit.
Additional Chief Judicial Magistrate Rokeya Begum passed the order after Anam appeared before the court and sought bail yesterday.
The court set May 2 for the next hearing.
Advocates Nasir Uddin, Ashutosh Chakma and seven others represented the Star editor.
Khagrachhari Chhatra League President Teko Chakma filed the defamation case on February 15. The court then asked Anam to appear before it.
It is one of the 79 lawsuits that have been filed against Anam in 53 districts since February 9. The cases include 17 pleas for bringing sedition charges against him. The complaints cite Tk 1,32,811 crore as losses incurred due to “defamation”.
The case spree began after the editor at a TV talk show on February 3 made an introspective comment about a lapse in his editorial judgment in publishing some reports, based on information given by the Taskforce Interrogation Cell during the 2007-08 caretaker government rule, without being able to verify those independently.
The cases have drawn condemnation from local and foreign journalists and their unions as well as human rights bodies.