The Delhi High Court today extended the stay on a trial court order summoning Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal in a criminal defamation complaint filed against him by a police constable for his ‘thulla’ remark. A bench of Justice Sangita Dhingra Sehgal extended the relief till October 17 after the counsel submitted that the written submissions have been filed in the matter and the parties can proceed for arguments.
The court also noted that the chief minister has filed his rejoinder to the reply by Delhi Police constable Anil Kumar Taneja, who has sought dismissal of Kejriwal’s petition seeking stay and quashing of the trial court’s order summoning him.
On July 13 last year, the High Court had stayed the summons. Since then it has been extended from time to time. The policeman had alleged that Kejriwal had “crossed all limits of decency” by using the insulting word, ‘thulla’, for policemen in an interview in a TV news channel.
Taneja, who had filed the criminal defamation complaint on July 23, 2015, had claimed that by using the word, Kejriwal “has intentionally insulted the entire Delhi Police force as a whole and caused unnecessary provocation to the police personnel in Delhi”. The High Court, while staying the trial court’s order, in July last year had asked Kejriwal to explain the meaning of the word ‘thulla’ he had allegedly used against policemen.
The word used by Kejriwal is a Hindi word. The High Court wanted to know its meaning as the word does not exist in the dictionary. Earlier, Kejriwal’s counsel had told the court that the word ‘thulla’ was not used against all policemen but against those indulging in wrong practices.