Court fixes Jan 16 as next date of hearing in case against Smriti Irani

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Sultanpur (UP), Jan 11 (PTI) An Uttar Pradesh court has fixed January 16 as the next date of hearing in the case filed by shooter Vartika Singh against Union minister Smriti Irani and two others for allegedly demanding money to make her a member of the central women's commission.

The hearing of the case in the MP-MLA court in Sultanpur was scheduled to be held on Monday but the court fixed the next date for hearing on January 16, Vartika Singh's lawyer Rohit Tripathi said.

“I had filed a case of defamation against Union minister Smriti Irani and her aides for maligning my image. I do not have any relationship with any political party,' Vartika Singh had said earlier.

Irani's legal counsel had described the case as based on 'the most bizarre and mischievous set of falsehoods' and that 'political patronage' is written large on the matter.

Days after she was herself named in a police complaint, the shooter had alleged that people close to the minister issued her a fake letter, appointing her as a member the central women's commission, a possible reference to the National Commission for Women.

Vartika Singh alleged that Vijay Gupta and Rajnish Singh, the two ''aides'' of the Union minister, initially demanded Rs 1 crore from her and then brought the amount down to Rs 25 lakh.

She also alleged that one of the men talked to her in an obscene manner.

On November 23, however, Gupta had lodged a complaint against the shooter and another person at Musafirkhana Police Station in Amethi district, accusing them of levelling unfounded charges against him and trying to spoil his image, following which police had lodged an FIR against her.

Vartika Singh, however, claimed that the complaint was lodged after she threatened to expose 'corruption'. PTI CORR SAB RHL