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India
07 Jan 2018

Jaitley defamation: Ashutosh fined Rs. 10,000 for 'wasting court's time'

Ashutosh fined for wasting court's time in defamation-case

A Delhi court has fined AAP leader Ashutosh Rs. 10,000 for "trying to derail the proceedings" in a criminal defamation case filed against him.

The order came after Ashutosh sought re-recoding of petitioner Arun Jaitley's statement in Hindi. The court observed Ashutosh actually didn't have even a "slight discomfiture in English".

Needless to say, Ashutosh's plea was dismissed.

In context

Ashutosh fined for wasting court's time in defamation-case

Introduction

Details of the defamation case against Ashutosh

In Dec'15, Jaitley filed civil and criminal defamation cases against Arvind Kejriwal and AAP leaders Raghav Chadha, Kumar Vishwas, Ashutosh, Sanjay Singh, and Deepak Bajpai.

They had accused Jaitley of financial irregularities in Delhi & District Cricket Association (DDCA), of which he was the President during 2000-13.

Seeking Rs. 10cr in damages, Jaitley said the "malicious and defamatory" campaign was causing irreversible damage.

Hindi

Ashutosh demands Jaitley's re-examination, recording of proceedings in Hindi

The six accused were booked under Section 500 of the IPC, to which they pleaded not guilty. They were put on trial in March.

In September, Ashutosh asked for Jaitley to be re-examined in Hindi, saying the law mandates proceedings have to be conducted in a language everyone involved understands.

Advocates Sidharth Luthra and Manoj Taneja opposed the plea on Jaitley's behalf.

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Petitioner has written a book in English, court observes

Judgment

Petitioner has written a book in English, court observes

The court observed the application was moved with "no serious purpose" and was a "waste (of) precious time".

Ashutosh had written the book 'Anna: 13 Days That Awakened India' in English; keeps giving interviews in English; and the application itself was filed in English, it noted.

It added recording in Hindi wasn't possible due to infrastructural and technical issues, and fined him Rs. 10,000.

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