A Delhi court on Saturday dismissed an application by Bharatiya Janata Party leader Subramanian Swamy in the National Herald case, seeking a direction to Congress chief Rahul Gandhi, his mother Sonia Gandhi and other accused to either admit or deny if certain documents filed by him were original.
Additional Chief Metropolitan Magistrate Samar Vishal dismissed the plea, saying that none of the accused was stated to be the author of any of the documents.
"When the documents themselves are not admissible (the question of relevancy apart) in evidence due to some legal bar, the accused justifies himself legally in his decision to neither admit or deny those documents.
"Therefore, for the aforesaid reasons mentioned, the application under section 294 CrPC for directing accused to admit or deny the documents cannot be allowed," the court said in its order.
The BJP leader, in a private criminal complaint, has accused the Gandhis and others of conspiring to cheat and misappropriate funds by paying just Rs 50 lakh, through which Young Indian Pvt Ltd (YI) obtained the right to recover Rs 90.25 crore that Associate Journals Ltd owed to the Congress.
The court also disposed of two other applications filed by Swamy -- one seeking certain documents from the Congress party and other urging the magistrate to take on record certain documents related to the Income Tax department -- saying they will be decided on the later stage.
It said that the "relevancy and admissibility" of the two applications shall be decided at the stage of evidence or judgment as the case may be.
All the seven accused - the Gandhis, Motilal Vora (All India Congress Committee treasurer), Oscar Fernandes (AICC general secretary), Suman Dubey, Sam Pitroda and YI - have denied the allegations levelled against them in the case.
The court had summoned the accused persons, besides YI, on June 26, 2014.
On December 19, 2015, it had granted bail to Sonia Gandhi, Rahul Gandhi, Vora, Fernandes and Dubey, who had appeared before it pursuant to the summonses. Pitroda was also granted bail on February 20, 2016 when he had appeared in the court.
Sonia Gandhi, Rahul Gandhi, Vora, Fernandes, Dubey and Pitroda had been summoned for the alleged offences of misappropriation of property, criminal breach of trust and cheating, read with criminal conspiracy of the Indian Penal Code.