Court allows Badals` plea to withdraw case against Sonia, Amarinder

A court here on Saturday allowed a plea by Punjab Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal and his deputy Sukhbir Singh Badal to withdraw cases against Congress president Sonia Gandhi and former Chief Minister Amarinder Singh.

Last Updated: Oct 30, 2010, 21:13 PM IST

Chandigarh: A court here on Saturday allowed a plea by Punjab Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal and his deputy Sukhbir Singh Badal to withdraw cases against Congress president Sonia Gandhi and former Chief Minister Amarinder Singh.

The plea was allowed by Chief Judicial Magistrate JS Sidhu.

In 2002, the Badal, the then SAD president, and his son Sukhbir Singh had moved the court to file two civil cases seeking damages from Congress leaders on the basis of
"malicious advertisement campaign" before the state Assembly elections in 2002.

In February 2002, Parkash Singh Badal and Sukhbir Badal had filed a case seeking damages of Rs 5 crore from Sonia Gandhi and Amarinder Singh, the then Punjab Congress chief.

In their complaint, the Badals had accused Sonia Gandhi of being responsible for the "defamatory advertisements".

The complainant seeking damages had alleged the advertisements had wrongly conveyed a message that Parkash Singh Badal, had mortgaged the state’s interests in the SYL
canal, besides the future of Punjab farmers, to the then Haryana Chief Minister (O P Chautala) in return for a gift of 22 acres in Gurgaon worth Rs 500 crore.

Subsequently, on August 12, 2002, the then SAD chief Badal had filed another civil case against Amarinder Singh seeking damages of Rs 5 crores, accusing him of spreading and
publishing false reports about his assets and properties.

The court has allowed the SAD leaders to withdraw these cases.

The withdrawal application filed by the Badals says "as per the averments and submissions made...still without prejudice to the merits of the case with a view to creating an atmosphere of cordiality of relationship with one and all and hereby seek the permission of the court to withdraw the same."

Earlier this month, the CJM`s court had dismissed as withdrawn the criminal defamation case filed by Punjab Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal against his rival and predecessor Amarinder Singh.

The CJM`s court had issued the order in the light of submissions made to the court earlier by the counsels of the concerned parties in the case.

Badal had moved applications to withdraw the criminal defamation cases against Amarinder, submitting that the intention behind the step was to "create an atmosphere
of cordiality in the relationship" between the two leaders.

Badal had filed the criminal defamation case against Amarinder Singh under different Sections of the IPC in 2002 alleging that the Congress leader had launched a slanderous
campaign against him which had tarnished his and his family`s image in the public eye.

The Shiromani Akali Dal patriarch had made the announcement regarding his intention to withdraw the cases after he, his wife Surinder Kaur and son Sukhbir Badal were acquitted in disproportionate assets case by a court in Mohali.

PTI