Malayalam Newspaper Mathrubhumi has agreed before the Supreme Court to apologize to lottery baron Santiago Martin for calling him 'lottery Mafia'.

This comes after cognizance was taken of the offences under Sections 499, 500, 501, 502 and 120B of the Indian Penal Code against the Malayalam Newspaper over its alleged defamatory statements, viz., "lottery mafia like Santiago Martin will not be allowed to operate in Kerala".

Today the matter was listed before the Supreme Court's bench of Justice SK Kaul and Justice Abhay S Oka.

The Senior Counsel appearing for the newspaper stated that the aforesaid statement was made by a Minister in Kerala which was reported by the newspaper.

Justice SK Kaul then said, "Everything was fine if you would have avoided the adjective, 'lottery mafia'." Justice Abhay S Oka noted that the name of the man was also mentioned.

To this, the Counsel for the newspaper said that it had reported what the minister had said.

"We do not appreciate the use of the adjective"., Justice Kaul added.

The Counsel for the newspaper stated that an apology will be tendered. The Court then adjourned the matter to 9 December.

In this case, FIR was filed somewhere in Gangtok against the Managing Editor, the Managing Director and the Joint Managing Editor of Mathrubhumi.

Following this, Mathrubhumi had approached Sikkim High Court seeking quashing of the Order taking cognizance of the offences under Sections 499, 500, 501, 502 and 120B of IPC and the Summons, issued to the accused persons.

The High Court refused to interfere with the Order taking cognizance and the Order vide which summons was issued.

The Court had held that the bona fides of the Petitioners in publishing the alleged defamatory statement, said to be in good faith and for serving the public good, are questions of fact that are required to be tested by evidence and decided after the regular trial is held, and cannot be truncated at this stage.

Cause Title- PV Chandran v. Santiago Martin