BJP chief Amit Shah’s son Jay today filed a criminal defamation case in a metropolitan court in Ahmedabad against news portal ‘The Wire’ over a report claiming his firm’s turnover grew exponentially after the party came to power in 2014. Additional Chief Metropolitan Magistrate S K Gadhvi ordered a court inquiry into the matter under CrPC section 302.
In his application, Shah prayed for, “criminal action against the respondents for defaming and tarnishing the reputation of the complainant through an article, which is scandalous, frivolous, misleading, derogatory, libelous and consisting of several defamatory statements.”
The seven respondents in the case are the author of the article Rohini Singh, founding editors of the news portal Siddarth Varadarajan, Sidharth Bhatia and M K Venu, managing editor Monobina Gupta, public editor Pamela Philipose and the Foundation for Independent Journalism, the non-profit company that publishes ‘The Wire’.
The case has been filed under IPC sections 500 (defamation), 109 (abetment), 39 (voluntarily cause grievous hurt) and 120 B (criminal conspiracy). The Wire, in its report said that a company owned by Jay Shah saw a huge rise in its turnover after the BJP came to power in 2014. However, Jay Shah had rejected the charge, insisting the story was “false, derogatory and defamatory”.
The court was of the opinion that it will issue summonses to the respondents only after the initial inquiry establishes a case. The next hearing for a court inquiry will be on October 11 when two witnesses from Jay Shah’s side who had first informed him about the publication of the article are likely to depose.
Shah is yet to file a civil defamation suit against the respondents. He had earlier announced that he will also file Rs 100 crore civil defamation suit. A political storm has erupted after the article titled ‘Golden touch of Jay Amit shah’ was published. The Congress has demanded an inquiry into the matter, while the BJP called the article defamatory.