Badal withdraws defamation cases against Sonia, Amarinder

Saturday, October 30, 2010

CHANDIGARH - A local court here Saturday allowed a plea by Punjab Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal to withdraw civil defamation cases filed against Congress president Sonia Gandhi and Congress leader and former chief minister Amarinder Singh.

Acting on a plea by Badal, filed early this month, Chief Judicial Magistrate J.S. Sidhu dismissed the defamation cases that were filed in 2002.

Badal had sought damages from Congress leaders accusing them of running a malicious advertisement campaign against him during the state assembly elections in 2002.

Parkash Singh Badal and his son Sukhbir Singh Badal had filed a civil defamation case against Amarinder Singh and Sonia Gandhi and demanded Rs.5 crore compensation. A second civil defamation case was filed by Badal (senior) against Amarinder Singh, demanding Rs.5 crore (compensation), S.P.S. Bhullar, Amarinder Singh’s lawyer, told IANS.

Court has allowed to withdraw both cases. Badal said that in a bid to create an atmosphere of cordial relations, he has withdrawn the cases, said Bhullar.

Badal made the announcement to withdraw the case last month after he, his wife Surinder Kaur, and Sukhbir were acquitted in a case of disproportionate assets by a court in Punjab’s Mohali town, 10 km from here.

Badal announced on the floor of the Punjab assembly that he would withdraw the case against Amarinder Singh to end the bitter political rivalry.

On Oct 16, a local court here allowed a plea by Badal to withdraw a criminal defamation case filed against Amarinder Singh.

This defamation case was filed by Badal claiming that he had written a letter to him in September 2001 listing 16 properties owned by him and his family.

The letter alleged that the Badal family owned properties in several places across India and in other countries like the US and Australia. The value of these properties was put at over Rs.35 billion.

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