New Delhi/ Nagpur: The Aam Aadmi Party on Tuesday will file a 2000-page reply to Arun Jaitley’s civil defamation case against Arvind Kejriwal and five other leaders in the party in the Delhi High Court, according to reports. The five leaders named are Ashutosh, Raghav Chadha, Sanjay Singh, Kumar Vishwas and Deepak Bajpayee.
Jaitley decided to file the defamation case after Kejriwal and other AAP leaders attacked him over alleged irregularities and financial misconduct during Jaitley’s tenure as president of Delhi’s cricket body, Delhi and Districts Cricket Association (DDCA).
Senior advocate Siddharth Luthra, who appeared for Jaitley while filing the complaint at Patiala House, told the court that the accused AAP leaders have made completely baseless and defamatory allegations against the finance minister. “Jaitley has not drawn a single penny from the DDCA. Completely baseless and defamatory allegations have been levelled against him and his family members,” Luthra said.
While denying the allegations, Jaitley claimed that it was Kejriwal’s way to divert attention from the CBI raid on the Delhi secretariat in December, 2015.
The raid had stoked a clash between the two with Kejriwal alleging that the raid was meant to seize some files purportedly containing details of alleged corruption in DDCA when Finance Minister Arun Jaitley was its president between 1999 and 2013.
Kejriwal followed up his charge with his government decision to constitute a probe under the Commission of Inquiry Act headed by former Solicitor General Gopal Subramanium, who has contended that Delhi government has the authority to constitute such a probe.
As the fight continued, the Union Ministry of Home Affairs sent a communication that “the elected Government of National Capital Territory of Delhi is neither the Central Government nor the State Government within the meaning of Section 2 and 3 of the Commission of Inquiry Act, 1952. Therefore, it has no jurisdiction or power to set up a Commission of Inquiry under the said Act.”
Lieutenant Governor Jung also deemed the probe committee illegal.
DDCA has also filed a defamation case against Kejriwal and Kirti Azad for making the allegations, seeking Rs. 2.5 crore as damages from each of them.
With inputs from PTI