The Delhi High Court today allowed another joint settlement plea of Arun Jaitley, Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal and four other AAP leaders in a Rs 10 crore defamation suit filed against them by the union minister in the DDCA row.
The Delhi High Court today allowed another joint settlement plea of Arun Jaitley, Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal and four other AAP leaders in a Rs 10 crore defamation suit filed against them by the union minister in the DDCA row. The plea for settlement was allowed by Justice Rajiv Sahai Endlaw as Kejriwal and the AAP leaders – Raghav Chadha, Sanjay Singh, Ashutosh and Deepak Bajpai – tendered an apology to Jaitley, who accepted it.
The court, however, said the defamation suit against AAP leader Kumar Vishwas will continue as he has not offered to settle the matter. It also asked Jaitley’s counsel Manik Dogra to inform Vishwas, who was neither present nor represented by any counsel during the hearing, about today’s order and said that if nobody appeared for him on April 26 (the next date of hearing) the court will proceed against him.
Earlier in the day, another single judge bench of the high court had closed the second defamation suit filed by Jaitley against Kejriwal over alleged use of objectionable word by the chief minister’s former lawyer Ram Jethmalani in open court during the proceedings of the original defamation suit. Jaitley had lodged the first defamation suit in December 2015 against Kejriwal and the five AAP leaders after they had alleged financial irregularities in the Delhi and District Cricket Association (DDCA) when the union minister was its president.
The BJP leader had denied all these allegations. According to the joint application, apart from Kejriwal, Chadha, Singh, Ashutosh and Bajpai have “unequivocally” apologised for their statements against Jaitley in connection with irregularities in DDCA. Kejriwal also apologised for Jethmalani’s use of objectionable words against Jaitley during his cross-examination. On February 20, Kejriwal had concluded his cross-examination of Jaitley in the first defamation suit.
The proceedings in the cross-examination was termed by the high court as “malicious” and “a sheer mockery”. The cross examination of Jaitley by Kejriwal, which had begun in March 2017, ended on February 20 after more than 300 questions were put to the union minister over around 11 days. The proceedings had also witnessed the high court raising serious objections against the manner in which questions were being put to the BJP leader.