India's star wrestler Bajrang Punia gets bail from Delhi Court in a criminal defamation case filed by coach Naresh Dahiya on Thursday. The latter had accused the wrestler of damaging his name and image with his statements during the wrestlers' protest against former WFI chief Brij Bhushan Sharan Singh. 

Punia missed the first three hearings but appeared in Delhi court on Thursday. The court granted him bail and has set the next hearing for March 5.

"Bajrang had sought exemption from physical appearance and missed the first three hearings. He appeared physically today and the court has granted him bail. The next date for hearing is March 5," Rajesh Kumar Rexwal, who represented Dahiya, told PTI after the court's decision on Thursday.

Earlier in August, coach Naresh

Dahiya registered a complaint and accused Bajrang and other wrestlers of making defamatory remarks during a speech at Delhi's Jantar Mantar on May 10. Court had summoned the Tokyo Olympic medalist on September 6 but the latter sought exemption from physical appearance.

"On a consideration of the complaint, supporting documents and pre-summoning evidence, I am of the prima facie view that all the ingredients of defamation are made out. It appears that the statement made in the press conference was a result of malicious intent and was not made in good faith. In view of the same, let accused, namely, Bajrang Punia be summoned for the commission of offence punishable under Section 499 read with Section 500 (both dealing with criminal defamation) of the IPC," Metropolitan Magistrate Yashdeep Chahal had said in August.

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