A local court in Ludhiana Monday acquitted Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) MLA and former senior journalist Kanwar Sandhu in a defamation case filed against him by Fastway Transmissions Private Limited, a television cable network company owned by Gurdeep Singh Jujhar, said to be close aide of former chief minister Parkash Singh Badal.
The case was filed in 2011 when Sandhu was the managing editor of Day and Night TV news channel and had demanded a ‘CBI enquiry’ against ‘cable mafia’ operating in Punjab. Sandhu is MLA from Kharar constituency in Mohali district.
In the complaint filed under sections 499 and 500 of IPC, the complainant Rajdeep Singh, company manager had alleged that Sandhu made defamatory remarks against Fastway by calling it a ‘cable mafia’ during a press conference on February 8, 2011.
Sandhu in that press conference had reportedly demanded a CBI enquiry into ‘cable mafia’ alleging that despite his agreement with Fastway that his channel will be given proper frequency, it is censored and muted whenever some anti-Akali Dal news was put on air. He had alleged that his channel is blacked out by Fastway Cable to suppress the news content that is against Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD), the then ruling party in Punjab. The court of judicial magistrate class-I (JMIC) Puneet Mohinia on Monday acquitted Sandhu of all the charges in verbal orders.
KL Kochar, counsel of Sandhu said, “The court has acquitted my client of all the charges in defamation suit which was filed against him by Fastway owners through their manager. He had only demanded a CBI enquiry against cable mafia running in Punjab. We produced several documents and media reports in which other leaders like Navjot Singh, Simarjeet Bains etc too had put forth same demand and given such statements.”
He added that detailed and written copy of orders was not yet available.
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