Ram Jethmalani quit as Arvind Kejriwal’s counsel, seeks Rs 2 crore as fees

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Senior Supreme Court Advocate, Ram Jethmalani  has quit as chief minister Arvind Kejriwal’s counsel in the civil and criminal defamation cases filed by Union finance minister Arun Jaitley against the CM.

Jethmalani has asked Kejriwal to settle his legal fees amounting to more than Rs 2 crore. The lawyer used an offensive word, amounting to accusing Jaitley of being a criminal, during proceedings of the Rs 10-crore defamation case against Kejriwal and five other AAP leaders.

 

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This week, the Delhi Chief Minister has in an affidavit told the court: “With due respect it is submitted that neither Kejriwal nor the counsel briefing the senior counsel Jethmalani gave instructions to the senior counsel to use the objectionable words on May 17, 2017.”

Mr Kejriwal has told the court that he had even written to Mr Jethmalani to refute his claim that he had instructions “to use objectionable words.”

It was in response to an application by Mr Jaitley that said, “numerous irrelevant and scandalous questions have been asked during the cross examination of the Union minister and abusive and defamatory statements have been made” on the instructions of Mr Kejriwal.

Following Kejriwal’s denial of having instructed the lawyer to use derogatory language against Jaitley during court proceedings on May 17, the lawyer has written a letter to the CM, accusing him of using even more offensive language against Jaitley during private discussions on the case.

Jethmalani has asked Kejriwal to settle his legal fees amounting to more than Rs 2 crore. The lawyer used an offensive word, amounting to accusing Jaitley of being a criminal, during proceedings of the Rs 10-crore defamation case against Kejriwal and five other AAP leaders.

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Jaitley asked Jethmalani if the word was spoken on his client’s instruction. The lawyer replied in the affirmative and Jaitley filed another Rs 10-crore defamation suit against the CM.

Stung by the fresh defamation suit, Kejriwal filed an affidavit in Delhi high court and wrote a letter to Jethmalani saying he had not given any instructions for use of the derogatory word.

In his affidavit, Kejriwal said it was ” inconceivable that he would even think of instructing the senior counsel to use such objectionable words”. “Neither the defendant (Kejriwal) nor the counsel (Anupam Srivastava) briefing the senior counsel (Jethmalani) gave instructions to the senior counsel to use the objectionable words on May 17, 2017,” Kejriwal said in the affidavit.
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“No person can be subjected to scandalous and abusive language in the garb of cross-examination; this has to be dealt with a heavy hand,” the High Court said today.

Arun Jaitley has sued Arvind Kejriwal and five other leaders of his Aam Aadmi Party for defamation saying they have made baseless allegations against him, accusing him of corruption during his 13-year-term as head of the DDCA, the powerful cricket body that governs Delhi and its surrounding areas. He has sought Rs. 10 crore in damages for the harm caused to his reputation.

Mr Jaitley has sought an additional 10 crore in his new suit.

 

Sources:

Times of India and NDTV

 

 

 

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