Defamation case on comments about PM’s degree: Kejriwal, Sanjay Singh move Gujarat HC on issue of summons

Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) leaders Arvind Kejriwal and Sanjay Singh have moved the Gujarat High Court against the sessions court’s order refusing to quash the summons issued against them in a criminal defamation case over their comments on Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s educational qualification.

Delhi Chief Minister Kejriwal and Rajya Sabha member Singh filed a plea challenging the September 14 order of the sessions court dismissing their revision applications against the trial court’s summons, their lawyer Percy Kavina said.

The matter was mentioned before the court of Justice Samir Dave for urgent listing primarily on the grounds that the trial court is due to take up the matter on September 23. The court declined the request and said that the office has been instructed to list it expeditiously, Kavina said.

A court of sessions judge JM Brahmbhatt had in its order last Thursday upheld the decision of the trial court to summon the two leaders and said the latter’s order was “neither illegal nor erroneous”.

The metropolitan court had first summoned Kejriwal and Singh on April 15 in the defamation case filed by Gujarat University over their “sarcastic” and “derogatory” statements in connection with PM Modi’s degree.

The two leaders then filed a revision application in the sessions court challenging the summons.

However, the court on August 7 rejected their plea for an interim stay on the trial, after which, they approached the Gujarat HC, which too refused their plea for interim stay.

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They then approached the Supreme Court, which also refused to entertain the plea.

The HC later directed the sessions court to conclude hearing within ten days after assigning the matter to a new bench.

Gujarat University registrar Piyush Patel had filed a defamation case against Kejriwal and Singh over their comments after the Gujarat High Court set aside an order of the Chief Information Commissioner on PM Modi’s degree.

Kejriwal and Singh made “defamatory” statements in press conferences and on social media targeting the university over Modi’s degree, the complainant stated.

Their comments, which were made intentionally, targeting the Gujarat University were defamatory and hurt the prestige of the university, as per the complainant.

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