A Delhi court recorded the statements of two people who came out in support of BJP leader Vijender Gupta who filed a defamation complaint against Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal and Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia.
The complaint was filed after the two Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) leaders allegedly tarnished Gupta's image by accusing him of attempting to kill Kejriwal. The statements of Bharatiya Janata Yuva Morcha (BJYM) state secretary Deepak Bansal and Anurag Malik, a law student from Delhi University, were recorded before Additional Chief Metropolitan Magistrate Samar Vishal. The court noted the submission of Gupta's counsel that he does not want to lead further evidence and that pre-summoning evidence may be closed.
"In view of the submissions, pre-summoning evidence is closed. Put up for arguments on the point of summoning of accused persons on July 8," the magistrate said.
Gupta showed his dismal and rubbished the allegations that surfaced against him by Kejriwal and Sisodia. Gupta also claimed that the allegations were deliberately initiated against him to impact the Lok Sabha polls in Punjab which were held in the last phase.
"The accused persons have made statements publicly on social media i.e Twitter. The tweet made by Kejriwal was re-tweeted around 3,000 times, while Sisodia's tweet was re-tweeted around 1,300 times. In addition, this being a sensational charge, it was picked up by both print and electronic media houses, thereby gravely impairing my reputation and the reputation of the BJP, for which both the accused are responsible." he said
Vijender Gupta is the Leader of Opposition in the Delhi Assembly. Also, his complaint stated that Gupta has sought compensation of rupees one crore with additional litigation costs from the AAP leaders. The BJP leader also said the two Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) leaders had not expressed any remorse and had an unapologetic stance towards his image being tarnished. He alleged that the statements of the accused were made with "ulterior motives" to degrade his reputation, malign his image for political advantages. Gupta described the allegation that he was attempting to kill Kejriwal as "malicious, deliberate and defamatory".
A legal notice was sent to the two AAP leaders, wherein they were called upon to immediately withdraw their tweets and apologize within a day, the complaint said. During LS polls, the Delhi chief minister had said in an interview to a Punjabi television channel that the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) wanted to get him killed by his own Personal Security Officer (PSO) in the manner in which former prime minister Indira Gandhi was assassinated.
Countering the charge, Gupta had tweeted:
"Before the slapgate on May 4, Arvind Kejriwal asked the liaison officer to lift the security cover around his vehicle. The chief minister's instruction is registered in the roznamcha (police diary). The AAP could not receive electoral gain out of it because I exposed this, so out of frustration Kejriwal is saying that his PSO reports to the BJP."
Deputy Chief Minister Sisodia shot back and accused Gupta of being a part of the conspiracy to kill the AAP supremo.
"BJP is conspiring to get the CM killed. This tweet by @Gupta_vijender has proved that the BJP is getting the daily security plan of the CM and it is hatching a conspiracy to kill the CM on this basis. Vijender Gupta is also a part of this conspiracy," he had said.
Gupta's tweet referred to an incident on May 4, when Kejriwal was slapped allegedly by a disgruntled AAP supporter during a roadshow in Moti Nagar here, prompting a strong reaction from the AAP, which alleged that the BJP was behind the "cowardly act".