The ongoing tussle between Shiv Sena MP Sanjay Raut and BJP leader Kirit Somaiya took an ugly turn after his wife, Professor Medha Somaiya, filed a Rs 100 crore defamation complaint in the Bombay High Court on Monday against the senior Shiv Sena leader over several defamatory statements against the couple, including ‘toilet scam’.
Medha has asked the HC to direct Raut to either pay the damages to her or donate the said amount to the Chief Minister’s Relief Fund. She has also sought an interim order restraining Raut from levelling any further allegations in public against the couple and their family. The date of hearing is yet to be announced.
Medha also urged the HC to direct Raut to furnish “a complete apology to Medha and retraction of the allegations and accusation made in the impugned defamatory articles/materials” in the forthcoming edition of the Shiv Sena’s mouthpiece ‘Saamana’.
Last month, Raut had alleged that the senior BJP leader had siphoned off Rs 57 crore in donations in a bid to save aircraft INS Vikrant. Raut even demanded a case of sedition to be slapped against Somaiya.
On the other hand, Somaiya had challenged Raut to submit any evidence to back his claims to Maharashtra Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray.
“While Kirit Somaiya was walking around wearing a T-shirt to save (INS) Vikrant, crores of people paid him money for the purpose. Besides, he collected crores from various companies in the name of saving INS Vikrant. Traitor Kirit Somaiya collected Rs 57 crore,” said Raut while addressing a press conference.
Raut further alleged before the media that Somaiya never deposited the fund money at the Governor’s office. “I have a letter from the Governor’s office. An RTI activist had asked whether the money collected for ‘Saving Vikrant’… has been deposited with the Governor. The Governor’s office replied that no such money had been deposited. This is a betrayal of national security and is treason.”
Raut further alleged that the donation money was used to fund election campaigns. Raut said that Somaiya had also used part of the money in his son’s company.