The SC also ordered tagging of Kejriwal's plea with a pending case filed earlier by BJP leader Subramanian Swamy on the similar issue.

Earlier on March 17, Arvind Kejriwal and two other AAP leaders including Deputy CM Manish Sisodia were directed by a New Delhi court to appear before it in connection with a criminal defamation complaint, saying there was no ground for exemption from their appearance.

The three AAP leaders, however, had sought exemption from personal appearance for the day on the ground that the lawyers are on strike and the case was at a crucial stage and the presence of advocates was necessary.

The complainant, advocate Surender Kumar Sharma, opposed the plea saying the lawyers are on strike and not the litigants and it would not be in the interest of justice if any adjournment is given in the case as the case had earlier been adjourned three times due to absence of the accused.

Sharma had alleged that in 2013 he was approached by volunteers of AAP who had asked him to contest the Delhi Assembly elections on a party ticket, saying Kejriwal was pleased with his social services.

He filled up the application form to contest the polls after being told by Sisodia and Yadav that AAP's Political Affairs Committee of the party had decided to give him the ticket. However, it was later denied to him.

On October 14, 2013, the complainant claimed, articles in leading newspapers carried "defamatory, unlawful and derogatory words used by the accused persons" which have lowered his reputation in the Bar and the society.

Latest News from India News Desk