Court slaps Rs 5,000 fine on Sheila for not appearing in defamation case

Dikshit had been summoned on Monday for her examination-in-chief and cross-examination in the case.

Written by Express News Service | New Delhi | Published: October 29, 2013 2:27 am

A Delhi court on Monday ordered CM Sheila Dikshit to pay a penalty of Rs 5,000 for not appearing in court in a defamation case against former Delhi BJP chief Vijender Gupta.

On August 6,the court had framed charges against Gupta for allegedly using “uncivilised language” to defame her in the run-up to municipal elections last year.

On that date,Gupta had claimed that he was being “harassed” since the court easily granted exemption from personal appearance to the CM,while he had to submit minor details to get an exemption.

Metropolitan Magistrate Namrita Agarwal had then reassured him that whenever required,the attendance of the parties in the matter would be compulsory and the court would not grant favour to anyone in the case.

On Monday,Magistrate Agarwal kept her word by slapping a penalty of Rs 5,000 and asking Dikshit to be present on the next date “without any excuse”.

Dikshit had been summoned on Monday for her examination-in-chief and cross-examination in the case.

She sought exemption from the hearing on grounds that she was busy in election meetings. Her plea was hotly contested by Gupta’s counsel who maintained that his client was also contesting elections but still appeared in court.

The court allowed Dikshit’s application with costs and warning that she appear on the next date of hearing scheduled on January 27,2014.

The complaint in the case refers to alleged derogatory remarks made by Gupta in interviews to daily newspapers published and circulated in the city. According to Dikshit’s complaint,Gupta had defamed her to belittle her public image and gain political advantage. Gupta had dismissed the charges as a “political gimmick” and “a baseless case”.

“I am being humiliated… the case has gone on for a year but the CM has appeared only once in the case and that too after much pressure,” Gupta had said.

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