Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal has tough times ahead for him. The AAP convener has a slew of defamation charges against him as he has leveled serious allegations against people without any hard evidence. What started last week with the apology to Shiromani Akali Dal leader Bikram Singh Majithia got another high after Kejriwal tendered apologies to Nitin Gadkari today. On Friday, Kejriwal had tendered an apology to former Punjab minister and SAD leader Bikram Singh Majithia in connection with the allegations he had levelled related to the drugs issue. The Delhi CM apologized to Majithia for alleging that the former CM of Punjab was embroiled in a drug trade, but after the former apologized, Majithia decided to withdraw the lawsuit.
Today, Arvind Kejriwal wrote a letter to Union Minister Nitin Gadkari and apologised for leveling unverified allegations against him. Gadkari had filed a criminal defamation case against the Delhi CM for an alleged defamatory statement. Kejriwal and Gadkari have filed a joint application seeking withdrawal of the defamation case in Delhi’s Patiala House Court. In 2014, Arvind Kejriwal had read out a list of ‘corrupt people’ and mentioned Nitin Gadkari’s name in a press conference before the parliamentary polls.
Notably, the Aam Aadmi Party has justified Kejriwal’s string of apologies — Arun Jaitley could be next, as per reports — saying that the government was there to serve the people and not to indulge in an ego war. AAP leaders said that the slew of cases against the CM were draining the party’s resources. Moreover, reports have it that in many of these cases, Kejriwal has been asked to personally appear.
Here are the other major defamation cases filed against the Delhi Chief Minister in recent past:
1. Defamation cases by Arjun Jaitley: Finance Minister Arun Jaitley has filed three defamation cases against the Delhi Chief Minister. Jaitley had filed a civil defamation suit seeking Rs 10 crore in damages from the latter in connection with the DDCA matter. In December 2016, Jaitley filed a criminal defamation case against Arvind Kejriwal. This matter began when in December 2015, Kejriwal calimed that the CBI raided his CM office in search of DDCA files. He had targeted Arun Jaitley over the issue.
2. Ram Jethmalani’s spat with Arvind Kejriwal: In May 2017, Arun Jaitley filed another Rs 10 crore suit against Arvind Kejriwal. This time, it was over senior lawyer Ram Jethmalani for using the word “crook” for Jaitley during a cross-examination in DDCA defamation case. Jethmalani later said that he was asked by Arvind Kejriwal to use the word.
3.Kejriwal apologises to Kapil Sibal: Arvind Kejriwal expressed regret to Congress leader Kapil Sibal and his son Amit today. Amit Sibal, a lawyer, and son of Kapil Sibal, had filed a defamation suit against Kejriwal for alleging that Kapil Sibal had a conflict in seeking to revise a tax demand on telecom major Vodafone.
4. Chetan Chauhan case: Chetan Chauhan of Delhi District Cricket Association filed a defamation case against Kejriwal in February 2016. Chauhan accused Kejriwal of defaming him by passing derogatory remarks.
5. BJP MP Ramesh Bidhuri files defamation case: In 2016, BJP MP Ramesh Bidhuri had accused Kejriwal of leveling baseless allegations against him. The Patiala House court had issued summons to Kejriwal in this matter.
6. Defamation case against Kejriwal and deputy Manish Sisodia: Lawyer Surender Kumar Sharma had filed a defamation case against Arvind Kejriwal and his deputy Manish Sisodia in 2013. Sharma had accused them of defaming him by denying AAP ticket for Delhi Assembly polls after announcing him as party candidate.
7. DDCA files defamation case against Kejriwal, Kirti Azad: DDCA has alleged that Kejriwal had indulged in making false, defamatory, baseless, and outrageous statements against the cricketing body. Kirti Azad is also facing defamation suit for his alleged defamatory criticism of the functioning and finances of DDCA.
8. Pawan Khera vs Arvind Kejriwal: In 2013, Pawan Khera, political secretary to Delhi Chief Minister Sheila Dikshit, had accused Arvind Kejriwal of making defamatory remarks against Dikshit. Kejriwal was accused of using false and filthy language against her. Kejriwal was also accused of maligning the Delhi government.
9. Subhash Chandra takes on Arvind Kejriwal: Rajya Sabha MP Subhash Chandra in November 2016 filed a defamation case against the Delhi CM for allegedly defaming him by levelling false allegations in the wake of demonetisation. Chandra claimed that Kejriwal had made false, fabricated and defamatory allegations against him.