Praful Patel fined Rs 3k by Mumbai court

Former Civil Aviation minister and veteran Nationalist Congress Party leader Praful Patel was on Thursday fined Rs 3,000 by a Mumbai court for seeking yet another adjournment in a defamation case.

The case was filed by Patel against former Air India Executive Director Jitender Bhargava, who had authored a controversial book — The Descent of Air India.

The book had chronicled the decline of Air India under Patel by citing numerous acts of omissions and commissions when Patel was at the helm of affairs besides other factors responsible for Air India’s financial condition and current state of affairs.

When Patel’s lawyer sought an adjournment, Metropolitan Magistrate V P Adone not only rejected the plea, but also imposed a fine of Rs 3,000. The next and final hearing date has now been fixed for February 12 by the magistrate after imposing the penalty on him.

Irked by the contents of the book that Bhargava penned after retirement, in October 2013, Patel filed a defamation case against Bhargava and the publishers, Bloomsbury.

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