Jai Dehadrai withdraws defamation case against Mahua Moitra as ‘peace offering’

The advocate had last year accused the Trinamool leader of taking bribes from businessman and Hiranandani Group CEO Darshan Hiranandani to ask questions in Parliament

Updated - April 25, 2024 08:51 pm IST

Published - April 25, 2024 04:09 pm IST - New Delhi

TMC MP Mahua Moitra. File

TMC MP Mahua Moitra. File | Photo Credit: PTI

Advocate Jai Anant Dehadrai on Thursday withdrew his defamation lawsuit from the Delhi High Court against former partner and Trinamool Congress (TMC) leader Mahua Moitra as a “peace offering”.

Mr. Dehadrai had last year accused Ms. Moitra of taking bribes from businessman and Hiranandani Group CEO Darshan Hiranandani to ask questions in Parliament. Ms. Moitra was subsequently expelled from the Lok Sabha on December 8.

Ms. Moitra, in October last year, filed a case before the High Court against Mr. Dehadrai, BJP MP Nishikant Dubey and several social media platforms and media houses seeking to bar them from posting, circulating or publishing any alleged fake and defamatory content against her.

Sought damages

Earlier this year, Mr. Dehadrai also moved the present lawsuit seeking damages of ₹2 crore from the TMC leader claiming that after he filed a complaint with the CBI over Ms. Moitra receiving illegal gratification for unauthorisedly providing her Lok Sabha login credentials to a third party, she “embarked on a ceaseless campaign of slander and abuse” to disseminate “false, abusive, and defamatory statements‘‘ against him.

On Thursday, Mr. Dahadrai’s counsel suggested that the present case could be put to an end if Ms. Moitra was willing to “de-escalate” by undertaking that she would not make “palpably false” statements.

Justice Prateek Jalan said, “If this is something that can stop the crossfire, it is a welcome suggestion”.

“Maybe personal allegations on both sides can be taken out of the public domain. If there is some possibility of arriving at an agreed protocol of behaviour..,” Justice Jalan said as he noted that there were several cases pending in the court in relation to the dispute between the parties.

Mr. Dehadrai, who was present in court, subsequently said he would unconditionally withdraw the lawsuit. “I am willing to withdraw. I will withdraw as a peace offering,” his advocate said.

The High Court, then, permitted Mr. Dehadrai to withdraw the lawsuit.

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