Former Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) leader Sushil Chauhan today dropped a defamation case against BJP leaders Manoj Tiwari and Harish Khurana today linked to a man slapping Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal during the Lok Sabha election campaign earlier this year.
Mr Chauhan, who was earlier AAP's in-charge of the Jhuggi Jhopdi cell in Delhi, had joined the BJP last week.
"In the last Lok Sabha elections, after Arvind ji was attacked, the senior AAP leaders had asked me to file a defamation complaint against Manoj Tiwari and Harish Khurana. At that time, I asked my party members that it is not a big matter and I do not want to be a part of it," Mr Chauhan was quoted as saying by news agency ANI.
Mr Chauhan said the AAP should work for the people and not drag workers into such matters. "I read about the case in media and thought of taking it back as it is not that big a matter," he said.
On May 4, Mr Kejriwal was slapped by a man while campaigning for the Lok Sabha elections. Mr Kejriwal, who was on an open jeep, was shaking hands with supporters and waving at the gathering when a man climbed the vehicle and slapped him. AAP supporters immediately pulled him down and thrashed him. The attacker was later identified as Suresh from West Delhi.
While the BJP leaders claimed that attack on Mr Kejriwal was carried out by Sushil Chauhan, then an AAP member, and was staged; the AAP had accused the BJP of the attack.
In the defamation complaint, Mr Chauhan had accused Manoj Tiwari of making "false" and "frivolous" statements with the intention to "malign the image of the complainant and AAP amongst the electorate of Delhi".
"Accused number 1 (Manoj Tiwari) made an oral statement and accused number 2 (Khurana) made a written imputation on his Twitter account concerning the complainant and the AAP intending to harm the reputation of the complainant,” the complaint said.
Mr Khurana accused the Delhi Chief Minister for swaying attention from the main issue.
"We had alleged that AAP's own party workers had attacked the chief. On this, a case was filed and withdrawn today. Arvind Kejriwal always tries to sway the attention away from the main issue," Mr Khurana said.
(With inputs From ANI)
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