New Delhi: Delhi's Patiala House Court has taken cognisance of the criminal defamation complaint against Congress's Shashi Tharoor over his 'scorpion' remark on Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

The court said on Friday that it will record the complaint of the BJP's Delhi unit leader Rajeev Babbar on December 22. Babbar had lodged an FIR against Tharoor under sections 499 and 500 of the Indian Penal Code (IPC). It is expected to issue summons to Tharoor following that.

Claiming to be a devotee of Lord Shiva, Babbar said that the religious sentiment of millions of Shaivas has been hurt. Babbar says Tharoor did this deliberately.

Speaking at the Bengaluru Literature Festival, Congress MP Shashi Tharoor on October 28 had called Prime Minister Narendra Modi a “scorpion sitting on a Shivling”, quoting an unnamed Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) source.

“There is an extraordinarily striking metaphor expressed by an unnamed RSS source to a journalist that ‘Modi is like a scorpion sitting on a Shivling; you can’t remove him with your hand and you cannot hit it with a chappal either’,” said Tharoor.

The Congress MP was referring to a piece, ‘The Emperor Uncrowned’ published in The Caravan magazine where an unnamed RSS leader used this metaphor.

Tharoor was in Bangalore to promote his new book The Paradoxical Prime Minister: Narendra Modi and His India.