Joju George's complaint: HC says case against Cong leaders cannot be quashed

Actor Joju George protesting against the strike organised by the Congress against rising fuel prices on the Edappally-Vytilla-Aroor bypass on November 1, 2021. FILE PHOTO: Manorama

Kochi: The High Court on Wednesday said the case registered against Congress leaders on the complaint of actor Joju George cannot be quashed. The court further clarified that the offence of obstructing traffic remains and cannot be overlooked.

The court, however, quashed the charges of bodily harm and verbal assault.

Joju had recently submitted an affidavit stating he had no objection to cancelling the case against the Congress leaders. But the High Court said, even if Joju's complaint is withdrawn, the crime committed against the public cannot be ignored.

It was on November 1, 2021, that Joju protested against the strike called by the Congress in Kochi against rising fuel prices. Held on one of the busiest roads in Kerala, the Edappally-Vytilla-Aroor bypass, the strike caused a massive traffic jam during the day, attracting the ire of the actor and the public alike.

Joju, who was on his way to a hotel in the city with director A K Sajan for a film discussion, lost his cool after being stuck in traffic and decided to give the agitators a piece of his mind. He walked up to the protesting leaders and got into a heated argument with them. He said hundreds were stuck in traffic for hours because of the strike, before adding that disturbing the public was not the way to hold a protest.

Joju even explained the situation of a family, who was stuck in traffic and could not get their child home after chemotherapy. Soon, others in the crowd joined Joju in expressing their anger over the strike.

Meanwhile, a few Congress agitators allegedly broke the window of the actor's car. Joju then filed a complaint, which saw a non-bailable case being registered against 15 people, including former mayor Tony Chammany. The case was that the agitators stopped Joju's vehicle, opened the door forcefully, threatened the actor by manhandling him and broke the window of his car.

The Congress leaders alleged that Joju was in an inebriated state and created a ruckus on purpose. A woman Congress worker filed a complaint with the police against Joju.

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