New Delhi: A Delhi court is likely to pronounce on Thursday its order on issue of taking cognisance of Zee News Editor Sudhir Chaudhary's criminal defamation complaint against Congress MP Naveen Jindal and 16 officials of his firm Jindal Steel and Power Ltd (JSPL).
On December 21, 2012, Metropolitan Magistrate Jay Thareja had reserved for January 3 his order on taking cognisance of Chaudhary's complaint which alleged that Jindal and JSPL officials had made "deliberately false" statements against him with the intention to tarnish his image.
In his complaint, Chaudhary had said defamatory statements were made in an FIR lodged against him in the alleged Rs 100 crore extortion bid case at a press conference held in New Delhi. Chaudhary and Zee Business Editor Samir Ahluwalia were arrested on November 27, 2012 on a complaint by Jindal's firm that they had demanded Rs 100 crore as an advertising deal for not airing "negative" news reports against the firm in connection with the coal block allocation scandal.
Both Chaudhary and Ahluwalia were granted bail on December 17, 2012 by the court. They have been booked under section 384 (extortion), 420 (cheating), 120 B (criminal conspiracy) and 511 (punishment for attempting to commit offences punishable with imprisonment for life or other imprisonment) of the IPC.
During the hearing on December 21, Chaudhary's lawyer Vijay Aggarwal had said the complaint in the alleged extortion case was filed by Rajeev Bhadauria, Director (HR) of JSPL, and all others who are named in the defamation complaint, were well aware that false statements have been made in it.
Chaudhary in his complaint had said that on October 25, 2012, when Jindal along with others held a press conference and made "false statements" that Broadcast Editors Association (BEA) had removed him as a treasurer "after giving him opportunity and after considering his statement, but Chaudhary never appeared before BEA and BEA passed the order without hearing him".
He further said he has already challenged his removal from BEA in the Delhi High Court which has issued notice to the association. "The statements made by the accused persons are totally malicious, false, incorrect and defamatory allegations/remarks against the complainant," the complaint said.
Chaudhary in his complaint had also alleged that JSPL has circulated among its shareholders a letter containing very "serious and utterly false allegations" against him because of which he is facing humiliation, ill treatment and his goodwill and reputation has been lowered down in his social circle.