The Delhi high court on Tuesday identified the issues in the civil defamation case filed by Union finance minister Arun Jaitley against Delhi chief minister Arvind Kejriwal and five AAP leaders on which it will be hearing arguments from both sides.
The court framed the issues despite the Aam Aadmi Party chief and his colleagues denying they had made defamatory statements against the finance minister.
In his suit, Jaitley has sought Rs 10 crore in damages from Kejriwal and the others for their allegations of irregularities and financial bungling in the Delhi and District Cricket Association (DDCA) when he was its president for 13 years till 2013. The BJP leader, who has denied the charges, has also filed a criminal defamation complaint in a city court on the same matter while the DDCA, too, has moved court against Kejriwal.
Kejriwal’s counsel submitted that whatever was said against Jaitley was in public domain and the CM had not said anything on his own. The other AAP leaders named in the suit are Raghav Chadha, Kumar Vishwas, Ashutosh, Sanjay Singh and Deepak Bajpai.
Among the issues framed are whether Jaitley is entitled to damages for the alleged defamatory statements, what the amount should be, and “whether the statements which are in public domain are actionable or not”.
The court fixed the matter for September 27 and sent it to the joint registrar to decide whether any defamatory statements were made. It condemned a statement made by advocate HS Phoolka, appearing for one of the AAP leaders, that it was giving special treatment to this suit.