Court issues summons to BJP leaders on DJB VC’s complaint

A Delhi Court has issued summons to BJP leaders including Delhi party president, two MLAs, and spokesperson on a defamation complaint filed by Delhi Jal Board (DJB) Vice Chairman Raghav Chadha over their alleged remarks.

In the order, Additional Chief Metropolitan Magistrate Dharmender Singh of Rouse Avenue District Court held that there were sufficient grounds for proceedings against the respondents — Ramvir Singh Bidhuri, MLA from Badarpur; Vijender Gupta MLA from Rohini’ and BJP’s Delhi unit Media Relations Incharge and spokesperson Harish Khurana — and summoned them under sections 500 (punishment for defamation) and 33 (common intention) of the IPC.

However, no notice or summons from any of the Investigating Agency has been made to the law office of the board with respect to the allegations made by respondents. Chadha stated that he has been informed about this by the office of consultant law, Delhi Jal Board, Headquarters.

The order said, in view of allegations made in the complaint, testimonies, and material brought on record by them, this court is prima facie satisfied that there are sufficient grounds for the summoning of all respondents.

As per the complaint, on January 21 this year, one Press Conference was held by the BJP leaders wherein allegations were leveled against the board that they have committed a scam of Rs 26,000 crore. In the defamation suit moved through advocate Prashant Manchanda, the complainant alleged that the BJP leaders referred to the board as “Dalali Jal Board”, adding Gupta referred to it several times.

The respondents also made defamatory statements on social media including Facebook, Twitter, and print media, and widely shared by the official page of BJP, Delhi on Twitter. It is alleged that defamatory content spoken and disseminated by respondents also found a prominent place in numerous Hindi Newspapers.

It was also live telecast on the official Facebook page of BJP, Delhi, the board alleged in its complaint.