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Defamation case
HC: Wonít interfere with trial court summons to Army Vice Chief
Legal Correspondent

New Delhi, July 16
The Delhi High Court today rejected the plea of Vice Chief of Army Staff SK Singh and two others for a stay on the trial court summons to them in a criminal defamation case filed by Lt Gen (retd) Tejinder Singh for levelling false allegations against him.

Justice PK Bhasin clarified that the trial court would consider their contention that they could not be proceeded against in the case without getting sanction from the competent authority as mandated under Section 197 of the CrPC.

On Lt Gen Tejinderís complaint, the trial court had, on June 8, summoned retired Army Chief Gen VK Singh, Maj Gen SL Narshiman (Additional Director General of Public Information), Lt Gen BS Thakur (DGMI), and Lt Col Hitten Sawhney, besides SK Singh, to appear before it on July 20.

The defamation pertained to the March 5, 2012, press release levelling allegations against Lt Gen Tejinder Singh. According to Gen VK Singh, Lt Gen Tejinder offered him a bribe of Rs 14 crore for clearing a deal for 600 trucks. It was alleged that Lt Tejinder was also behind the illegal off-air interception of some important telephone calls pertaining to sensitive information. Lt Gen Tejinder Singh has denied both the charges.

Justice Bhasin passed the order after both the parties agreed that the issue of sanction could be raised before the trial court.

The magistrate could decide the question of sanction in accordance with law without being influenced by the HC order, but only upon they had appeared before him, it was clarified.

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