Defamation case: Delhi HC reserves order on Kejri’s plea

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Published on Jul 26, 2016 01:00 PM IST
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ByPress Trust of India

NEW DELHI: The Delhi High Court reserved its order on chief minister Arvind Kejriwal’s plea to stay the proceedings before a trial court in a criminal defamation case filed against him and AAP leaders by finance minister Arun Jaitley.

“The judgement is reserved,” Justice PS Teji said after the counsel for both the parties concluded their arguments on the plea challenging the trial court’s May 19 order by which it had turned down the chief minister’s request to adjourn hearing on a criminal defamation case before it, till the high court decided the civil suit before it.

Senior advocate Ram Jethmalani, appearing for Kejriwal, submitted that there were two cases--one civil and the other criminal--filed against AAP leaders on the same allegations and the trial court should have stayed the proceedings in the matter, but it had declined.

“The trial court judge had said that he has no power to stay the proceedings,” Jethmalani said quoting from the lower court’s order.

Opposing the contention, senior advocates Harish Salve and Siddharth Luthra, representing Jaitley, said that in “today’s world, the words used are more powerful than sword”.

“No prejudice would be caused to the AAP leaders if both the civil suit before high court and the criminal proceedings before the trial court go contemporaneously ,” Luthra had said.

Jaitley has filed a criminal defamation complaint alleging Kejriwal and five AAP leaders — Raghav Chadha, Kumar Vishwas, Ashutosh, Sanjay Singh and Deepak Bajpai — had defamed him in the DDCA row.

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