Arun Jaitley rejected an offer of apology from Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal on Tuesday. The Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) chief, who is on an ‘apology spree’, had reportedly sent an emissary to the Union Finance Minister to see if the latter was willing to accept an apology in a case of defamation.
Reports say that Kejriwal sent his Rajya Sabha MP ND Gupta to Jaitley, who reportedly rejected the emissary’s appeal for an out-of-court settlement.
The Rs 10 crore Delhi and District Cricket Association (DDCA) defamation case – one of the 33 filed against Kejriwal – pertains to the Delhi Chief Minister accusing the Union Finance Minister of corruption during his tenure as the chairman of the Delhi cricket board.
Since 15 March, the Delhi CM has been issuing apologies to various political leaders from all parties who have filed defamation cases against him.
He has already apologised to Akali Dal leader Bikram Majithia for accusing him of involvement in drug trade without any proof to back the allegations.
His apology infuriated leaders from AAP Punjab. A furious Bhagwant Mann quit as its Punjab unit chief.
Yet an unfazed Kejriwal continued to issue apologies to other leaders. The AAP chief has already apologised to Congress leader Kapil Sibal, his son Amit, and BJP leader and Union Shipping and Transport Minister Nitin Gadkari for making unverified allegations of corruption against them.
In a March 16 letter to Gadkari, Kejriwal said he was feeling sorry for making “certain statements, without regard to its verifiability, which seem to have hurt you…
“I have nothing personal against you. I regret the same. Let us put the incident behind us and bring the court proceedings to a closure.”
He also suggested to the Union Shipping and Transport Minister that “we should put our energy to serve the people of this country in the spirit of mutual respect”.
Following the apology, Both Gadkari and Sibal withdrew their respective defamation cases against Kejriwal.
Asked whether they would apologise to Jaitley also, Sisodia told reporters outside Delhi Assembly: “We do not want to fight any ego battles with anyone. If anything has happened to anyone due to what we had said, we will apologise and work for the people. We do not have time for court activities. We have time for people and people’s issues.”
Kejriwal is yet to apologise to former Delhi CM Sheila Dikshit, who, too, has filed a defamation case against the AAP chief.