Rasht, Gilan Prov, Jan 14, IRNA -- Managing Director of 'Gilan-e-Emruoz', a daily published in this northern Iranian province, was summoned to court to answer to accusations against his daily by Rasht Friday Prayer leader.
The Managing Director of Gilan-e-Emrouz, Mohammad-Kazem Shokouhi-Raad, told IRNA on Monday evening that he had been legally informed at the court of the accusations brought up against him by the representative of the Supreme Leader and in Gilan Province, and Friday Prayer Leader of Rasht, Ayatollah Zeynol-Abedin Qorbani.
Shokouhi-Raad told us that the case is being proceeded in details at Gilan Province Judiciary, but refrained from offering any further explanation about his first appearance before the court, or the nature of the accusation brought up against him by the ayatollah.
IRNA also contacted Ayatollah Qorbani, who told us, "I filed a complaint against Mr. Shokouhi-Raad for baseless accusations made against certain individuals in his daily, as well as spreading a phony rumor in one of the last week issues of his paper."
The ayatollah added, "one of the duties of a Friday Prayer leader is talking in his sermons about the problems with which the people are entangled, and asking the concerned officials to mind them, so that the people should have stronger trust in their political system."
He added, "reacting to certain objections by me to deficiencies in the province and my asking the officials to try to eliminate them, Gilan-e-Emrouz in one of its last week issues considered them 'instigating the public opinion' and meanwhile raised some other accusations against me."
The representative of the Supreme Leader in the province said, "this daily has claimed, 'How can those who lives in multi-million houses claim to be the defenders of the rights of the oppressed, and the laborers?"
Ayatollah Qorbani added, "I do not have a multi-million house in Rasht, and the place I reside at presently and use it as my office, too, belongs to the Gilan Governorate Organization."
He said, "publishing stuff like that leads to weakening the people's trust in their officials."
Gilan-e-Emrouz was published on Monday, too, but had no news on being summoned to court of its managing director.
... Payvand News - 1/14/03 ... --