Delhi High Court Issues Notice to Prashant Bhushan in Indiabulls Defamation Case Indiabulls has alleged that Bhushan's defamatory statements on social media caused substantial damage to the goodwill and reputation of the Group The Delhi High Court by a single judge, Justice Yogesh Khanna, has issued a notice on a quashing petition by Senior Advocate Prashant Bhushan against a...
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Delhi High Court Issues Notice to Prashant Bhushan in Indiabulls Defamation Case
Indiabulls has alleged that Bhushan's defamatory statements on social media caused substantial damage to the goodwill and reputation of the Group
The Delhi High Court by a single judge, Justice Yogesh Khanna, has issued a notice on a quashing petition by Senior Advocate Prashant Bhushan against a defamation case filed against him by the Director of Indiabulls Venture Capital Management Private Limited.
However, the Court on 1 February 2021 exempted the personal presence of Prashant Bhushan wherein a criminal defamation proceeding against him was going on for his tweets posted against the Indiabulls Housing Finance Limited.
Bhushan had sought to quash the summons issued to him in the criminal case which alleged that he had remarked defamatory statements regarding the functioning of Indiabulls Group, its promoters, officials and directors etc., vide social media platforms - Twitter, Instagram and Facebook.
Indiabulls Venture Capital is a part of the Indiabulls Groups of companies, a subsidiary of Indiabulls Housing Finance Ltd (IBHFL). Its director has alleged in his case against Bhushan that his 'defamatory statements' on various social media platforms have caused substantial damage to the goodwill and reputation of Indiabulls Group as well of its promoters, directors and officials.
The defamation complaint was filed against Bhushan for his allegations that the promoters of Indiabulls siphoned off crores of rupees borrowed from public banks and institutions.
Bhushan defended that the complainant was not an aggrieved person in terms of Section 199 Criminal Procedure Code (CrPC) because it could have been initiated only by the promoters of Indiabulls. Therefore, the complainant had no locus to file the case.
The criminal case was lodged against Bhushan on a Tweet dated 14 September 2019, wherein Bhushan stated: 'Strange that Red Notices are issued against scamsters after they flee country.' Mallya's notice was downgraded to allow him to flee. None of them have been brought back. Similar story likely to unfold with promoters of Indiabulls who siphoned off 1000s crore'.
He stated that the purpose of the said tweet was to alert the authorities against a possible loss to the exchequer of thousands of crores of rupees that IBHFL/its promoters have borrowed from public banks and institutions. The same being an exception to the offence of defamation under Section 499, Bhushan claimed he must be protected.
It was further asserted that the tweets were made in the public interest and do not even mention the complainant's employer company.
Bhushan while expressing his displeasure stated that the defamation complaint was only an attempt to obstruct the course of justice and intimidate him. Bhushan had filed a Public Interest Litigation (PIL) for an in-depth inquiry against the illegalities committed by the promoters of Indiabulls Housing Finance Ltd.