Congress deputy leader in the Rajya Sabha, Anand Sharma, and former Union minister and All-India Congress Committee treasurer Moti Lal Vohra appeared before the court of chief judicial magistrate on Tuesday in a 12-year-old defamation suit filed by former chief minister Prem Kumar Dhumal.
Both Sharma and Vohra furnished surety bonds before chief judicial magistrate Ranjit Singh Thakur, who listed the matter for final hearing on December 10.
The leaders were accompanied by state Congress chief Sukhvinder Singh Sukhu, transport minister GS Bali, social justice minister Dhani Ram Shandil and Himachal Pradesh Congress Committee general secretary Harbhajan Singh Bhajji.
The case was filed by Dhumal against many Congress leaders, including former Punjab chief minister Capt Amarinder Singh, Vohra and Sharma for levelling charges of omission and commission in disclosing a list of properties allegedly owned by Dhumal and his family, at a poll rally in Hamirpur on January 18, 2003.
Dhumal had refuted their allegations, claiming that he had submitted a detailed list of properties and assets owned by him and his family to the Himachal Pradesh Assembly speaker after he was he was appointed the chief minister on April 5, 1998.
Later, the suit for damages was dropped against Amarinder after he tendered an apology before Dhumal. The former had rather blamed the media for misquoting him during the assembly elections.
Following the court hearing, Sharma and Vohra addressed members of the bar council where Sharma announced Rs 1 lakh for the upkeep of the lawyers’ library.