Criminal, civil defamation proceedings against Arvind Kejriwal to continue
New Delhi: In a setback to Delhi chief minister Arvind Kejriwal, the Delhi high court on Wednesday dismissed a plea seeking a stay on parallel proceedings in defamation cases brought against him by Union finance minister Arun Jaitley.
As a result of this, both ongoing civil and defamation proceedings at different forums will continue to be heard simultaneously.
“There is no illegality in continuance of criminal proceedings before the magistrate.” said justice P.S Teji while pronouncing the order. He added that proceedings in civil defamation by the Delhi high court does not bar criminal proceedings initiated at a Delhi court.
The plea brought by Kejriwal had sought a stay on a 19 May trial court order that denied his request for stalling proceedings in one of the two defamation cases—civil or criminal—being heard in two different forums.
Jaitley has sued Kejriwal and his Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) colleagues Kumar Vishwas, Ashutosh, Sanjay Singh, Raghav Chadha and Deepak Bajpayee for alleged defamatory statements made against him and his family members.
The suits were filed over allegations of financial mismanagement in the Delhi and District Cricket Association (DDCA) during Jaitley’s 13-year term as president till 2013. In the civil defamation case, the finance minister has sought compensation of Rs10 crore from Kejriwal and his colleagues.
The civil defamation case, being heard at the Delhi high court, has been sent to the registrar general for setting a date for trial. Charges are still to be framed against Kejriwal and others at another Delhi court where the criminal defamation case is being heard.