Hunger strike libel winner 'considered suicide'

Protester accused by tabloids of 'sneaking away' to eat MacDonald's whilst on hunger strike is compe

The Tamil refugee, Parameswaran Subramanyam, who went on hunger strike to protest against his forced exile from native Sri Lanka, has won a libel case against the Daily Mail and The Sun.

The tabloids had printed stories accusing the Sri Lankan of sneaking away from his protesting post to tuck into fast food.

On strike to raise awareness of the ostracization of Tamils back in April 2009, Parameswaran's reaction to the comments was so deep that he considered taking his life.

He officially ended the hunger strike on 30 April 2009, said Boyd, and at the time had not eaten any food for 23 days and had to be hospitalised for five nights.

The tabloid headlines and captions - published six months after the Tamil had ended his strike - included "Hunger Striker was Lovin' It" and "Bogus... striker was 'eating burgers'".

His solicitor, Magnus Boyd from Carter Ruck, explained that, "The allegations are entirely false - which both defendants now accept. The claimant did not consume any food at all throughout his hunger strike. The Metropolitan Police Superintendent who was in charge of the operation in Parliament Square confirmed that there was no police surveillance team using 'specialist monitoring equipment' and that no video evidence existed."

The libel damages are undisclosed but reportedly "substancial"