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Arun Jaitley defamation suit: Can't defame complainant again, says Delhi High Court

Arun Jaitley defamation suit: Can't defame complainant again, says Delhi High Court HC: If Jethmalani's claim true, CM must testify
Manuel Armenta | 20 May, 2017, 05:07

Terming as "scandalous" certain remarks made by Delhi CM Arvind Kejriwal's lawyer Ram Jethmalani against Union Minister Arun Jaitley, the Delhi High Court on Thursday observed that the one who has already filed a defamation suit can not be defamed again.

Justice Manmohan said if the remarks were made at the behest of Kejriwal, he could step in the "box" (witness box) and prove the allegations.

Nayar said that if Kejriwal had instructed the senior lawyer to make the adverse remark, then they would seek additional aggravated damages of Rs 10 crore from him.

Counsels for Jaitley, Rajiv Nayar and Sandeep Sethi, sought directions from the court seeking a reply whether the remarks were made by Jethmalani in his personal capacity, or after receiving instructions from his client, Arvind Kejriwal. Let Defendant 1 make good his allegations.

The defamatory remarks were made by the senior lawyer during the Union finance minister's cross-examination in a civil defamation suit filed by the BJP leader.

If on the other hand, Jethmalani had on his own made the remark, then it would be a violation of the Bar Council of India rules, he said. Kejriwal], then no point in continuing with the cross-examination of the plaintiff [Mr. "It's unpleasant", Justice Manmohan said, adding that "cross-examination should be carried out in accordance with the law".

"The question is disallowed as the article has been observed to be irrelevant by the court on May 15, 2017".

"What is to be done when such scandalous remarks are made".

On Wednesday, Jethmalani called Jaitley a "crook" before joint registrar Deepali Sharma when the minister was being cross-examined in the Rs 10-crore civil defamation case filed by him against Kejriwal and five other AAP leaders. During the hearing, the judge frowned upon the way the cross examination was carried out saying a person who has filed a defamation case "cannot be further defamed in this manner". Jaitley, 64, was in the court for the fourth round of cross-examination by Jethmalani in his defamation case against the AAP chief. While sending the amendment application to the bench, which was earlier hearing the case, Justice Manmohan made known his displeasure at the language used during Wednesday's cross-examination.