13 Apr 2023

Defamation Case: Surat Court To Pronounce Order On Rahul Gandhi's Plea On April 20


Surat: A sessions court in Surat on Thursday said it would deliver its order on Congress leader Rahul Gandhi's plea for a stay to his conviction in a criminal defamation case on April 20. Rahul has been convicted by a lower court over his "Modi surname" remark.

Additional sessions judge R P Mogera heard arguments from both sides. He said he will pronounce the order on April 20.

Trial was not fair: Rahul's lawyer


Senior advocate R S Cheema, who represented Rahul, told the judge that the trial was not "fair". He said the judgement by the magistrate was "strange" because the trial court judge "made a hotchpotch of all the evidence on record", Cheema said. 


Cheema said the entire case was based on electronic evidence, wherein Rahul made a speech during elections and a person sitting 100 km away filed a complaint after watching that in the news ... There was no need for maximum punishment in this case, argued Cheema. 

He also said that Gandhi's unconditional apology to the Supreme Court (in Rafale contempt case) was wrongly attached with this case by the complainant.


Rahul had tried to defame all people with Modi surname: Plaintiff


On the other hand plaintiff Purnesh Modi's lawyer Harshit Toliya said Rahul had tried to defame all people with Modi surname through his remarks. He said (\Gandhi was the president of the second largest party at the time of making the speech. His speech made a huge impact on the people of India and he also tried to sensationalise his speech, said Toliya.

He informed the court that Rahul Gandhi had refused to apologise for his remarks.

A metropolitan magistrate's court in Surat had on March 23 sentenced the Congress leader to two years in jail after holding him guilty for his remark "How come all thieves have Modi as the common surname" made during an election rally in 2019.

Gandhi was later disqualified as Member of Parliament after the conviction. He has filed an appeal before the sessions court against the verdict. He also sought a stay to the conviction in the meantime.

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