Shiv Sena Rajya Sabha MP Sanjay Raut on Thursday pleaded 'not guilty' before a magistrate in a criminal defamation complaint filed by BJP leader Kirit Somaiya's wife Medha Somaiya. Raut is presently in custody in a money laundering case and was produced before the magistrate court in Sewree through video conference.
The defamation case had arisen out of statements made by Raut in a press conference in April in which he had made averments regarding corruption by an NGO run by Medha Somiaya in the construction of public toilets.
On the last date, Medha's lawyer had sought that a production warrant is issued against Raut to be present before the court for proceedings in the defamation matter. The plea had stated that he is now in custody in another case and since he cannot himself remain present, that the court issue a production warrant for his production before it.