NEW DELHI -- Delhi High Court today asked Arvind Kejriwal to explain the meaning of the word 'thulla' he allegedly used against policemen, as it stayed a trial court order summoning the Delhi Chief Minister in a criminal defamation complaint filed by a constable.
Justice Mukta Gupta granted the relief to Kejriwal till 21 August on his plea seeking stay on the summon issued to him by a trial court for his appearance on 14 July, which prima facie found that he had committed the offence.
"Till the next date (August 21) the petitioner (Kejriwal) is exempted from personal appearance before the trial court," the court said.
However, "you (Kejriwal) will have to satisfy this court what is the meaning of the word that was allegedly used by you. So be ready," the court said.
The word used by Kejriwal was a Hindi word and the court wanted to know its meaning as it does not exist in the dictionary. "If you have used this word, you must be knowing the meaning. I have not seen this word at all," the judge orally observed.
The court also issued notice to the complainant, Constable Ajay Kumar Taneja, and sought his response on the Delhi Chief Minister's plea.
The court's order and oral observation came during the hearing of the plea by Kejriwal who sought stay and setting aside of the trial court's order summoning him as an accused in the case.
Senior advocate N Hariharan, appearing for the Chief Minister, submitted that the word 'thulla' was not used against all policemen but against those indulging in wrong practices.
Constable Taneja, posted at Lajpat Nagar police station, had claimed that being a member of Delhi Police he was defamed by the word used by Kejriwal.
In the complaint, filed on 23 July, 2015, Taneja had claimed that Kejriwal had used the "derogatory" term for policemen on a news channel while talking about AAP government's "constraints" in ensuring effective functioning of the Anti-Corruption Branch.