A court on Tuesday issued a fresh summons to Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal and Aam Aadmi Party's Rajya Sabha member Sanjay Singh to appear before it on June 7 in a criminal defamation case lodged by the Gujarat University over Prime Minister Narendra Modi's academic degree.
The court of Additional Chief Metropolitan Magistrate SJ Panchal summoned Kejriwal and Singh after the court was informed that the summons issued earlier directing the duo to appear on May 23 does not appear to have been received by them as none of them was present in the court.
Earlier, the court of additional chief metropolitan magistrate Jayesh Chovatiya had issued summons to the AAP leaders in a criminal defamation complaint for their 'sarcastic' and 'derogatory' statements against the Gujarat University over Prime Minister Narendra Modi's academic degree.
AAP's legal cell head for Gujarat, Pranav Thakkar, on Monday, said Kejriwal and Singh have not yet received the summons issued to them by the court.
On Tuesday, Gujarat University's lawyer Amit Nair appraised the new judge -- SJ Panchal -- about the case and said that his predecessor issued the processes on April 15 against the accused persons to remain present on May 23.
Since nobody was present on the given date, it is not clear whether the summons was served on them or not.
The judge asked the staff to check and then directed them to issue a summons to Kejriwal and Singh.
The previous additional chief metropolitan magistrate -- Jayesh Chovatiya -- issued a summons on April 15 after finding that prima facie there appeared to be a case against Kejriwal and Singh under section 500 of the Indian Penal Code (IPC) on a complaint filed by Gujarat University registrar Piyush Patel.
The defamation case was filed against Kejriwal and Singh over their comments after the Gujarat high court set aside the Chief Information Commissioner's order asking the varsity to provide information on PM Modi's degree.
They made 'defamatory' statements in press conferences and on Twitter handles targeting the university over Modi's degree, the complainant alleged, and claimed their comments targeting the university were defamatory and hurt the prestige of the institution, which has established its name among the public.
The comments quoted by the complainant and attributed to Kejriwal are: 'If there is a degree and it is genuine, then why is it not being given?', 'They are not giving degree because it might be fake', and 'If the prime minister studied at Delhi University and Gujarat University, then Gujarat University should celebrate that its student became the country's PM'.
Singh had said that 'they (GU) are trying to prove the PM's fake degree as genuine'.
Four witnesses were examined and other evidence submitted during the court inquiry, and the lawyer for the complainant argued that their statements would make a person believe that the Gujarat University issues fake and bogus degrees.