• December 15, 2023
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PM Modi’s Degree Remarks: Kejriwal and Singh Face Defamation Charges

PM Modi’s Degree Remarks: Kejriwal and Singh Face Defamation Charges

PM Modi’s Degree: On December 14th, a metropolitan court in Ahmedabad dismissed applications from Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal and Rajya Sabha member Sanjay Singh seeking adjournment in a defamation case linked to their comments about Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s educational qualifications.

The court, presided over by additional chief metropolitan magistrate SJ Panchal, denied the adjournment requests made by lawyers representing the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) leaders. It further postponed its ruling to Thursday on Kejriwal’s plea, stating that due to his status as a public servant, he couldn’t be prosecuted without sanction under Section 197 of the Code of Criminal Procedure (CrPC).

The duo faces a criminal defamation case filed by Gujarat University (GU) based on what the university deemed “sarcastic” and “derogatory” remarks about PM Modi’s degree. Kejriwal and Singh sought an adjournment citing pending petitions challenging the summons in the Gujarat High Court, scheduled for February next year.

PM Modi's Degree

Objecting vehemently to the adjournment pleas, Gujarat University’s lawyer, Amit Nair, highlighted that the High Court hadn’t imposed a trial stay, and witnesses for the case were present in court. Nair contended Kejriwal’s plea, arguing that, as a public servant, prosecution sanction under Section 197 of CrPC was necessary.

Representing GU, the lawyer argued that the alleged defamatory comments made by the leaders didn’t fall within the realm of official duties, hence negating the need for such sanction. He labeled the application as a delay tactic, prompting the court to reserve its order for Thursday.

Kejriwal and Singh had previously sought a stay on the defamation proceedings from the Gujarat High Court until their revision plea in a session court was resolved. The court summoned the leaders, noting a potential case against them under Section 500 (defamation) of the Indian Penal Code (IPC).

GU registrar Piyush Patel initiated the defamation case against the leaders following their remarks subsequent to the Gujarat High Court’s decision to annul the Chief Information Commissioner’s order on PM Modi’s degree. The comments, made in press conferences and on their Twitter handles, allegedly targeted Gujarat University, causing damage to its reputation and public standing.

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