Pundit plans to sue Nakhid for defamation

The content originally appeared on: Trinidad and Tobago Newsday

Pundit Satyanand Maharaj

Lawyers representing Pundit Satyanand Maharaj of the Satyanand Ashram, Aranguez, have sent a pre-action protocol letter to Opposition Senator David Nakhid, accusing him of defaming their client. They have asked for a retraction of his statements by May 19, as well as compensation for Maharaj’s legal fees.

In the letter, dated May 8, the lawyers said on May 2, Nakhid published a video on the internet captioned, “We are either brothers in faith or brothers in humanity” in which he made several defamatory statements against Maharaj.

Maharaj’s lawyers, Sunil Seecharan and Vasheist Maharaj, told Nakhid that his allegations of their client were libelous and has caused him serious distress and embarrasment.

The attorneys said Maharaj wanted a full and unequivocal public retraction and apology, and a statement of undertaking that Nakhid will not repeat the allegations.

The lawyers said they had advised their client he was entitled to substantial compensation for the injury to his reputation and feelings sustained, suggesting a preliminary sum of $750,000 and $35,000 in legal costs. The Opposition senator was given until May 19 to apologise. If he does not, Maharaj’s attorneys will file a claim for compensation in the High Court.