New Delhi: Whether Congress leader Digvijay Singh will be summoned as an accused in a criminal defamation case filed against him by BJP President Nitin Gadkari is likely to be known on Saturday when a Delhi court pronounces its order.

Metropolitan Magistrate (MM) Sudesh Kumar had on October 16 reserved his order on Gadkari's complaint after recording the statements of two witnesses.

The court had recorded the statement of Gadkari and BJP National Secretary Bhupinder Yadav, also a Rajya Sabha MP. Gadkari has filed the criminal defamation case against Singh, who has accused him of having business links with his party MP Ajay Sancheti who allegedly pocketed a huge sum in coal block allocation.

Gadkari, in his statement recorded in the court, had denied having any business ties with Sancheti and had said Singh had levelled "totally false and defamatory" allegations against him to "give the impression that I have been responsible for allocation of coal mines" to Sancheti.

In his petition, filed through advocate Ajay Digpaul, Gadkari has sought Singh's prosecution under sections 499 (defamation) and 500 (punishment for defamation) of the IPC.

In his complaint, Gadkari had said that the Congress-led UPA government is facing a lot of heat on account of its irregularities as brought out by the Comptroller and Auditor General of India (CAG) in coal blocks allocation and accused Singh of making baseless allegations against him to divert attention from the issue.

Gadkari's counsel had earlier denied that his client has any "direct or indirect" business relations with Sancheti and contended that Singh's statement had the "clear intention to malign the reputation of the complainant."

Yadav, who had also recorded his statement in the court, said that on September 3, he had read news articles in various newspapers about the alleged business relations between Gadkari and Sancheti and it was "totally false" that Gadkari had earned Rs 490 crore from coal allocation through Sancheti.

Yadav had also said that the news was "defamatory" and it had lowered Gadkari's image in the eyes of the public.

The court had also recorded the statement of an authorised representative of an English national daily in which the alleged defamatory statement of Singh was published.

(Agencies)

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