Gadkari sues Cong’s Manish Tiwari for defamation | mumbai | Hindustan Times
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Gadkari sues Cong’s Manish Tiwari for defamation

Nitin Gadkari, president of the Bharatiya Janata Party, has filed a defamation case against Congress spokesperson Manish Tiwari for claiming Gadkari held a benami flat in the scam-tainted Adarsh housing society at Colaba.

mumbai Updated: Dec 10, 2010 02:28 IST
HT Correspondent

Nitin Gadkari, president of the Bharatiya Janata Party, has filed a defamation case against Congress spokesperson Manish Tiwari for claiming Gadkari held a benami flat in the scam-tainted Adarsh housing society at Colaba.

Gadkari’s petition, filed before the Esplanade metropolitan magistrate court on Thursday, alleged that Tiwari had told reporters that BJP national executive member, Ajay Sancheti, has a benami flat in Adarsh society in the name of his driver. Sancheti, who is from Gadkari’s hometown, Nagpur, is close to the BJP president.

“(Tiwari) has uttered defamatory falsehoods against me maliciously and recklessly knowing the same to be false,” Gadkari’s petition said, adding that he neither owns nor has any interest in any flat in Adarsh.

The 31-storeyed Adarsh society, meant for defence personnel, is at the centre of a controversy after it was found that bureaucrats and politicians got flats in the tower in exchange for granting clearances. The Union environment ministry has alleged that the building has violated environment norms.

Gadkari has said Tiwari’s allegation was baseless and defamatory, and was made with the intent to tarnish his reputation.

“They are unfounded, reckless assertions of a beleaguered spokesperson of a ruling party discredited by several corrupt activities of its members and a shoddy attempt at salvaging the reputation of the ruling party by favouring leading political opponents with the same taint as afflicts the former,” Gadkari’s petition said.

Gadkari has pleaded that Tiwari be tried and punished under section 499 (Defamation) and 500 (punishment for defamation) of the Indian Penal Code.

Gadkari said he had issued a legal notice to Tiwari asking for an unconditional apology. “However, Tiwari has, to this day, refused to tender any unconditional apology,” the petition said.

The case is likely to come up for hearing next on January 24.