Bengaluru court orders police probe into 'fake art' case

Bengaluru court orders police probe into 'fake art' case

The chief metropolitan magistrate here has ordered a police inquiry into the alleged "fake art" case after it found out the complainant had made out a prima facie case against a Delhi-based gallery and others.

The case now has been handed over to the Jayanagar police station chief for investigation.

A Bangalore-based auction house, Bid and Hammer(B&H) had filed a defamation petition against the Delhi Art Gallery (DAG) and two of its officials for allegedly saying that some of the works at its Significant Indian Art auction on June 27, 2014, were "fakes". The auctioneer in its petition said that only art works of "unimpeachable provenance" were admitted into the auction.

According to B&H, the petition against Business Standard was withdrawn after the paper published a rejoinder.

Invoking Sections 499 and 500 of the Indian Penal Code and Section 66A of the Information Technology Act, 2000, the auction house in its complaint said that "rumours" spread by
Ashish Anand, managing director of DAG, and others had defamed it.

It said that by making "allegations and insinuations that were palpabably false", DAG officials had rendered "a highly negative image of the works brought to auction despite the highly credible process of authentication".

The petition before the metropolitan magistrate also named Abhilasha Ojha, production editor at DAG, for posting allegedly defamatory statements on Facebook.

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