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Ivory possession case; Kerala HC rejects govt's plea, orders actor Mohanlal to face trial
Kochi: Actor Mohanlal has been ordered to appear in person for trial before the Judicial First Class Magistrate’s court in Perumbavoor in Kerala’s Ernakulam district in connection with the illegal ivory possession case.
The Perumbavoor Magistrate's Court has again rejected the Kerala government's plea to withdraw prosecution against actor Mohanlal for alleged illegal possession of ivory.
The court ordered Mohanlal and the other accused in the case to face trial and appear in person on November 3.
According to the order of the Kerala High Court, the court again heard the government's plea to withdraw the case arguing the case was of no public interest. The court accepted the plea of the petitioners that the government cannot take a decision only on behalf of an individual.
Mohanlal claimed that the ivory was given to him as a gift. The government's position was that the tusk of the captive elephants was kept and therefore the Forest Wildlife Act was not applicable to Mohanlal. The court rejected these arguments.
In 2011, ivory was seized from the actor’s house in Kochi during an inspection by the Income Tax Department. He was booked under the Wild Life (Protection) Act. The case was later handed over to the Forest Department.
The Forest Department had fled a chargesheet against the actor in 2019. (ANI)