Supreme Court upholds prison sentence against K. Somanath Nayak in Veerendra Heggade case

6:20 PM, Tuesday, October 25th, 2022


Mangaluru : The Supreme Court has upheld a lower court order sentencing Nagarika Seva Trust president Guruvayankere K. Somanath Nayak to three months of imprisonment and imposing a fine of Rs.4.5 lakh on finding him guilty of disobeying an order of temporary injunction against publishing any statement impacting the reputation of D. Veerendra Heggade, pattadhikari of Shri Kshetra Dharmasthala.

In an order dated October 19, Justice M.R. Shah and Justice M.M. Sundresh said: “… Having gone through the impugned judgment and order passed by the Karnataka High Court and the learned trial court, we see no reason to interfere with the same in exercise of powers under Article 136 of the Constitution of India.

“There was already an injunction against the petitioner, which has been time and again violated/flouted by the applicant/petitioner. The applicant/petitioner is rightly held guilty for violation of the injunction in an application under Order 39 Rule 2A of Civil Procedure Code. The Special Leave Petition stands dismissed.”

Mr. Heggade filed an original suit before the Additional Civil Judge and JMFC, Belthangady, Dakshina Kannada district, and secured a temporary injunction order on November 5, 2013, against Mr. Nayak and five others restraining them from publishing any statement, imputation and allegation, lowering his reputation and that of Shri Kshetra Dharmasthala.

Mr. Heggade filed an interim application before the civil judge, Belthangady and sought action against Mr. Nayak for violation of the injunction order as the latter continued to publish statements against him. On June 8,2021, the court sentenced Mr. Nayak to undergo imprisonment of three months in a civil prison and pay compensation of Rs.4.5 lakh.

Mr. Nayak appealed against the order before the senior civil judge and JMFC, which was turned down on March 22, 2022. He then filed a writ petition in the Karnataka High Court, which was dismissed on May 5, 2022 . Mr. Nayak then filed a special leave petition before the Supreme Court.


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