A court here deferred the hearing on a plea for action against AAP leader Arvind Kejriwal for exhorting voters in his election speeches to take bribes if offered by the BJP and Congress but to vote for his party.
The hearing was postponed for Feb 3 as the Metropolitan Magistrate Richa Gusain Solanki was on leave Monday.
The criminal case was filed by Arun Kumar, a practicing lawyer in Tis Hazari courts, accusing Kejriwal of deliberately abetting bribery by asking Delhi voters to take bribe from the political parties ahead of the Feb 7 assembly elections.
He contended that Kejriwal, despite himself being a former chief minister and aware that acceptance of bribe is punishable under law, instigated voters to take bribes.
The lawyer sought Kejriwal’s prosecution under Sections 107 (abetment), 171 B (offering or accepting bribe) and 171 E (punishment for bribery) of the Indian Penal Code.
The plea said that Kejriwal made such a statement during his public rally Jan 18 at Uttam Nagar and made the same statement again Jan 22 at an election meeting in Krishna Nagar.
“The accused (Kejriwal) had made the statements with deliberate intention to abet Delhi voters, which include complainant (Arun Kumar) herein, with full knowledge and belief that by such instigation, Delhi voters may get instigated to accept bribe from other political parties such as Congress and BJP in Delhi assembly election,” said the petition.
Kejriwal had said that people from both the Bharatiya Janata Party and the Congress would offer money, which the voters should not refuse. The electors, however, should cast their vote in favour of his party, the Aam Aadmi Party leader said.
The Election Commission has already issued three notices to Kejriwal, asking him to desist from commenting on bribing of voters by political parties and warned him of strict action in the event of any violation.