SC stays order summoning BJP MP Manoj Tiwari & others on defamation complaint by Manish Sisodia

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New Delhi, Jan 27 (PTI) The Supreme Court Wednesday stayed the proceedings and the order passed by a trial court here summoning BJP MP Manoj Tiwari, party MLA Vijender Gupta and others on a defamation complaint filed against them by Delhi’s Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia.

A bench headed by Chief Justice S A Bobde agreed to hear the pleas filed by Tiwari and Gupta who have challenged the Delhi High Court’s December 17 last year verdict which had upheld the November 28, 2019 summoning order passed by the trial court.

“Issue notice. There shall be an interim stay of the operation of the summoning order dated November 28, 2019 passed by ACMM-I, Rouse Avenue Court Complex, New Delhi and all orders and proceedings emanating from the complaint case...titled as ‘Manish Sisodia v. Manoj Tiwari & Ors.’,” the bench, also comprising Justices A S Bopanna and V Ramasubramanian, said in its order.

Tiwari, a member of parliament from north-east Delhi constituency, has said in his plea that allegations in the complaint do not meet the basic requirements of constituting the ingredients of offence of defamation under the Indian Penal Code (IPC).

Similarly, Gupta, a BJP MLA, has said that the trial court had wrongly observed in the summoning order that there were sufficient grounds to proceed against him and others for the alleged offence of defamation.

The Aam Aadmi Party leader has filed a complaint against the two BJP leaders and others for allegedly levelling defamatory allegations against him on the issue of construction of classrooms in government schools in Delhi.

Sisodia has claimed in his complaint that all the allegations made by the BJP leaders jointly and individually were false, defamatory and derogatory with an intention to harm and damage his reputation and goodwill.

If convicted, the offence of defamation entails a punishment of up to two years, or with fine or both.

Both the BJP leaders had moved the high court seeking quashing of summons issued against them by the trial court. PTI ABA MNL SA