New Delhi: Congress leader Jagdish Tytler on Thursday told a Delhi court that there was no legally admissible evidence to frame charge against him in a defamation complaint filed by a senior advocate representing the victims in 1984 anti-Sikh riot cases.
Tytler's counsel argued that the complaint was filed by senior counsel H S Phoolka regarding alleged defamatory statements made against him by the Congress leader in a TV news programme aired on September 7, 2004 and there was a long and "inordinate delay" in the proceedings of this matter.
"The court has to see whether notice is to be framed against my client...There is no material to frame charge," his counsel told Additional Chief Metropolitan Magistrate (ACMM) Gaurav Rao during the arguments on framing of notice.
Tytler's counsel also argued that primary evidence filed by the complainant was based on a video cassette which is an electronic evidence but it cannot be filed in the court with proper certificate, as mandated by law.
Phoolka's counsel, however, countered his submissions contending that the complaint, statement of the complainant and other witnesses corroborating it, were enough to frame charge against Tytler in the matter.
"There is sufficient evidence to proceed with framing of notice," Phoolka's counsel said.
The court has now fixed the matter for further arguments on January 24.
The court had earlier watched the original video of the TV programme which was aired by the news channel in both English and Hindi.
In an earlier hearing, Tytler had told the court that he
was ready to tender "unconditional apology" to Phoolka to settle the matter as no public interest was involved in the complaint filed by an individual.
Phoolka, however, had refused to accept Tytler's offer, saying "any compromise" in a serious matter like this would send a wrong message to the people.
In his complaint filed in 2006, Phoolka had alleged that Tytler had levelled "false and derogatory" allegations against him to harm his reputation in the society.
His counsel had earlier told the court that Tytler should also be prosecuted for the offence of criminal intimidation under section 506 of the IPC.
The complaint against Tytler was filed in a Ludhiana court in Punjab. Later on, it was transferred to Delhi by the Supreme Court on Tytler's plea.