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Supreme Court slams Manish Sisodia for reducing the level of discourse, dismisses his plea to quash defamation case filed by Assam CM

The court dismissed the petition as withdrawn with a remark that the petitioner (Sisodia) would argue the points in the lower court.

On December 12, Supreme Court dismissed Delhi’s Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia’s plea seeking to quash defamation proceedings filed against him by Assam Chief Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma and his wife Riniki Bhuyan Sarma. In its remarks, the court told Sisodia that he has to face the consequences for “reducing discourse to that level”. The court questioned him for his language and said, “What do you mean by ‘Assam ki CM ki biwi ke bhrashtachaar ka kuchaa chitthaa’?”

Notably, Sisodia had claimed that the Assam government illegally purchased PPE kits from CM Sarma’s wife during the peak of Covid. Supreme Court bench led by Justice Sanjay Kaul slammed Sisodia for reducing public discourse.

During the hearing, the Senior Advocate appearing for Sisodia claimed his client never alleged that money was received by Assam CM’s wife. Justice Kaul said, “Once you reduce public discourse to this level, you have to face the consequences. You should have put an unconditional apology.”

Singhvi claimed that the statements were changed after the matter came into the public domain. He said the first para of the contract said something else, but later it was changed to ‘charity’. When Singhvi continued to claim that his client never claimed there was corruption, Justice Oka said, “See the manuscript of your press conference.”

Justice Kaul said, “Instead of realising what the country is going through, you are just making statements. Somebody, in those urgent times, tried to work out. If you feel you are entitled, argue (there) and get the case dismissed.”

The court dismissed the petition as withdrawn with a remark that the petitioner (Sisodia) would argue the points in the lower court.

The defamation case against Sisodia

In June 2021, Assam CM Sarma and his wife filed defamation cases against Manish Sisodia for his derogatory remarks against CM Sarma’s wife, Riniki Sarma. First, a Rupees 100 Crore defamation case against Aam Aadmi Party leader and deputy CM of Delhi, Manish Sisodia, was filed by Sarma’s wife. The case was filed against him for levelling corruption allegations in purchasing personal protective equipment (PPE) kits in Assam during the Covid pandemic. Later, another case was filed by CM Sarma against Sisodia over his allegations of corruption in the procurement of PPE kits at the beginning of the Covid-19 pandemic.

On June 4, in a press conference, Manish Sisodia alleged that the Assam govt had issued purchase orders for PPE kits to JCB Industries, a company run by Riniki Bhuyan Sarma, without following due norms. The allegations were based on a report published by the leftist propaganda portal The Wire, which had made the same allegations.

Notably, Sisodia is also facing allegations against him for his alleged role in Delhi Liquor Policy Scam.

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