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HC allows RInfra to amend defamation suit against AAP

The Bombay High Court allowed Reliance Infrastructure (RInfra) to amend the Rs. 100 crore defamation suit filed by it against Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) which alleged that the company was overcharging consumers in collusion with Maharashtra Electricity Regulatory Commission.

RInfra, a power distribution company, said it wanted to carry out amendments as it had collected some material which would strengthen its case against AAP.

In another development, senior counsel Aspi Chinoy appeared for three representatives of AAP, namely, Anjali Damania, Convenor, Maharashtra AAP, Preeti Sharma Menon, State Secretary, and Satish Jain, member, State AAP.

The trio had allegedly addressed a press conference recently making allegations against RInfra. Justice S J Kathawala had earlier this week asked them to appear before him today as they had not come to the court on last occasion.

Arguing for RInfra, senior lawyers Venkatesh Dhond and Birendra Saraf urged the court to allow them to carry out amendments as they had got additional material which would prima facie justify their case for defamation.

The court asked them to submit a draft of amendments on March 10 and said it would then ask AAP to file a reply. The case was adjourned to two weeks.

RInfra has taken out a notice of motion praying that the defendants be restrained from repeating the allegations of the Anil Ambani-led firm being involved in a “power scam”.

The plaintiffs alleged the AAP office-bearers had made baseless and false allegations at a press conference here last month to mislead the people, thereby defaming the company.

At the conference, AAP had accused RInfra and Tata Power of misrepresenting taxes and putting a burden of Rs. 434 crore on consumers in Mumbai over the last three years.

“Misrepresentation of taxes has surfaced in which both RInfra and Tata Power are involved, causing a burden of Rs. 434 crore on Mumbaikars in the past three years,” Damania had said at the February 27 meet.

RInfra and Tata Power had strongly denied the charge the same day itself.

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