The Delhi High Court on Monday fixed for February 26, the hearing on Kejriwal government’s plea to withdraw the appeal of previous Congress dispensation against a lower court order to register an FIR against former Chief Minister Sheila Dikshit in a corruption case.
A bench of Justice V.P. Vaish, which had pre-poned the hearing on the application for Monday, now fixed the plea on February 26, after Delhi Government informed that Additional Solicitor General, who will argue the case, was not available.
Arvind Kejriwal-led Aam Aadmi Party Government had moved the high court seeking to withdraw the appeal on February 14, the day when the Chief Minister and his council of ministers submitted the resignation on the controversy over passage of the Jan Lokpal Bill.
Highlighting its stand against corruption, the outgoing AAP government, in its plea, has said the Cabinet’s decision to take back the appeal, filed by the previous Congress government, has been approved by the Lt. Governor and Ms. Dikshit will have to defend herself as she is no more the Chief Minister and consequently, it lacked the “locus” standi to fight for her.
“The appeal was filed by the petitioner, i.e the ‘state’ on the premise that it had the locus (standi) to defend the alleged accused person who was the then sitting Chief Minister of Delhi.
“In view of changed circumstances and formation of the new government, the then Chief Minister ceases to hold the post and, therefore, the state i.e Government of National Capital Territory of Delhi no longer has the locus to continue the prosecution of the present petition on her behalf,” it said.
The government has taken a decision “not to defend any of its functionaries” involved in corruption case, the plea said.
The previous government had gone to the High Court in September last year against a lower court order to register an FIR against Ms. Dikshit on a complaint of BJP leader Vijender Gupta alleging her administration misused public funds to the tune Rs. 22.56 crore in an advertisement campaign ahead of 2008 Assembly polls. The order was stayed by the High Court.