A court in New Delhi on Wednesday granted AAP leader and Delhi Chief Minister-designate Arvind Kejriwal exemption from personal appearance in a defamation complaint filed by an advocate. Metropolitan Magistrate Muneesh Garg allowed Kejriwal, Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) leaders Manish Sisodia and Yogendra Yadav’s application seeking personal exemption from personal appearance due to some political commitments and fixed the matter for March 17.
The court had earlier reserved the order for Feb 11 on framing of charges against Kejriwal, Sisodia and Yadav while hearing a defamation complaint filed by Surender Kumar Sharma. “The press release published in newspapers as well as testimonies of witnesses reflect that defamatory remarks were published in the newspaper which affected the reputation of the complainant in the society and lowered his reputation in the eyes of other members of the society,” the court had said.
All three leaders are out on bail. Sharma had alleged that in 2013 AAP approached him and asked him to contest Delhi assembly election on a party ticket saying Kejriwal was pleased with his social services. He filled up the application form to contest the polls after Sisodia and Yadav allegedly told him that AAP’s Political Affairs Committee had decided to give him the ticket. However, it was later denied to him. On Oc 14, 2013, the complainant claimed that articles in leading newspapers carried “defamatory, unlawful and derogatory words used by the accused persons” which have lowered his reputation in the Bar and the society. Sharma, in his complaint, said the articles had also stated that AAP had decided to replace its candidate from the Shahdara Constituency.(IANS)