J&K govt files defamation case against PDP leaders

Last Updated: Wednesday, September 29, 2010 - 18:46

Srinagar: Jammu and Kashmir government
today filed a defamation case against two opposition Peoples
Democratic Party (PDP) leaders, including an MLA, for accusing
Chief Minister Omar Abdullah of receiving kickbacks in
allotting Rattle Power project.

Public Prosecutor Abdul Aziz Teli filed the case
against PDP MLA from Bandipora Nizamuddin Bhat and chief
spokesperson of the party Nayeem Akhtar before Principal
District and Sessions Judge Bansi Lal Bhat here.

The prosecution has sought trial of the PDP leaders
under Sections 499 (defamation) and 500 of the Ranbir Penal
Code (RPC), read with Section 198-B of Jammu and Kashmir
Criminal Procedure Code for levelling "false and baseless"
accusations against Omar that he received kickbacks to the
tune of Rs 500 crore.

The judge issued notices to the PDP leaders.

On August 25, Bhat alleged that "in the allotment of
Rattle power project, the Chief Minister is guilty of a huge
kickback from the party to which it has been allotted on BOOT
basis. About Rs 500 crores have been paid to the Chief
Minister."

Bhat, who was accompanied by Akhtar and several other
MLAs of the party at the press conference, said the evidence
of the Chief Minister having received the money will come
to fore once an inquiry into the bidding process is initiated.

Although Omar chose not to respond to the allegations
himself, Finance Minister Abdul Rahim Rather said the Chief
Minister decided to file criminal and civil cases against the
PDP leaders.

The Chief Minister later sent a legal notice to Bhat
and Akhtar saying they should give a public apology and
withdraw accusations within seven days, failing which legal
action would be taken against them.

The PDP leaders chose not to apologise and will now
face the courts.

Meanwhile, another case has been filed in the same
court against US-based cardiologist of Kashmir origin Fayaz
Shawl for levelling charges of corruption against Minister of
state for Urban Development Nasir Aslam Wani.

Hawl, who wanted to set up a heart hospital on the
banks of Dal Lake in Nishat area of the city, had accused
Wani, a close confidant of the Chief Minister, of demanding
illegal gratifications for granting permission to his project.

Wani had sent a legal notice to the doctor,
who pledged to donate nearly Rs 65 crore to SKIMS hospital
Soura here after shelving his heart hospital project,
demanding an apology from the cardiologist.

PTI



First Published: Wednesday, September 29, 2010 - 18:46

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