Retweeting dhruv rathee's video

Supreme Court: In a criminal special leave to appeal against the Delhi High Court’s decision, whereby, the summons against Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal were upheld and the defamation case for retweeting a video, posted by YouTuber Dhruv Rathee where allegations were made against Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) IT cell was refused to be quashed, the Division Bench of Sanjiv Khanna and Dipankar Datta, JJ. extended the interim stay till 13-05-2024 on proceedings in the defamation case before Delhi’s Rouse Avenue Court.


On 06-05-2018, Dhruv Rathee uploaded a video on YouTube and on 07-05-2018, he tweeted an allegation that the BJP IT Cell attempted to bribe someone to defame him, referring to the URL of the first alleged defamatory publication. On the same day, Arvind Kejriwal retweeted this allegation. A complaint was filed against Kejriwal for allegedly committing offenses under Sections 499 and 500 of Penal Code, 1860 (IPC). It was alleged that Dhruv Rathee made defamatory statements against him in a YouTube video and shared the URL on Twitter and Arvind Kejriwal retweeting this allegedly defamatory content without verifying its authenticity, thus spreading it to a large audience.

Arvind Kejriwal was summoned as an accused by the Rouse Avenue Courts, New Delhi. The summons was challenged before the Sessions Court, however, the revision petition was dismissed. he Delhi High Court upheld the summons and refused to quash the defamation case observing that retweeting defamatory content amounts to defamation as retweeting a content, which is allegedly defamatory, on the Twitter account and projecting it to be as if his own views, will prima facie attract the liability under Section 499 of the IPC, for the purpose of issuance of summons. The Court held that the rigours of Section 499 of the IPC will be attracted prima facie in case a person will retweet/repost the alleged defamatory remarks or content, for the general public to see, appreciate and believe.

Read more: [Arvind Kejriwal Defamation Case] ‘Retweeting’ a defamatory imputation amounts to ‘publication’ for purpose of S 499 IPC: Delhi High Court

The Court vide order dated 26-02-2024, stayed the proceedings in the defamation case pending before the Additional Chief Metropolitan Magistrate-I, Rouse Avenue Court, till 11-03-2024.


The Court extended the interim stay on the defamation proceedings till 13-05-2024.

[Arvind Kejriwal v. State (National Capital Territory of Delhi), Petition for Special Leave to Appeal (Crl.) No. 2413/2024, Order dated: 11-03-2024]

With inputs from the Press.

Image Source: arvindkejriwal/Instaram

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