Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal today suffered a setback when the Delhi High Court dismissed his plea seeking stay of trial court proceedings court in a criminal defamation case filed by Finance Minister Arun Jaitley saying, there was no “illegality” in continuing it simultaneously with a civil defamation suit.
The High Court said there was “no prejudice” on account of a pending civil suit and there was no “double jeopardy” and as such Kejriwal’s plea was “deviod of merit”.
It said the criminal and civil defamation cases were “different in nature”.
“There is no legal impediment to invoke the civil proceedings for defamation as well as initiating the criminal proceedings for defamation simultaneously and continuation of the same,” Justice Teji said.
Kejriwal had contented that proceedings before the trial court should be stayed since a civil suit was pending before the high court Regarding the challenge to the magisterial court’s May 19 order dismissing Kejriwal’s plea to grant stay on proceedings due to pendency of civil suit, the high court said that the trial court order was “free from perversity, impropriety, illegality and non-sustainability”.
“Resultantly, the request of the petitioner (Kejriwal) to adjourn the proceedings before the Chief Metropolitan Magistrate is rejected being devoid of merit and the same is culminated into dismissal of the present petition,” the high court said in its 30-page judgement.