A sessions court in Gujarat’s Surat city of Gujarat on Thursday commenced the hearing on Congress leader Rahul Gandhi’s plea seeking a stay on his conviction in a defamation case over his “Modi surname” remark in which he has been sentenced to two years in jail.
Rahul Gandhi was sentenced to two years in jail last month after holding him guilty for his remark “How come all thieves have Modi as the common surname”, made during an election rally on April 13, 2019.
Rahul Gandhi was granted bail soon after and filed an appeal before Judge Mogera against the verdict. Rahul Gandhi has also prayed for a stay on the conviction in the meantime. In his appeal, Rahul Gandhi has termed his conviction as “erroneous” and patently perverse.
Complainant in the case, Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) MLA Purnesh Modi, in his reply filed earlier in the same court, opposed Rahul Gandhi’s plea for a stay on conviction saying the Congress leader is a “repetitive offender” who is in the habit of making defamatory statements.
On Thursday, arguments from both sides commenced in the court of Additional Sessions Judge RP Mogera.
Trouble has mounted for Rahul Gandhi after Late Hindutva ideologue VD Savarkar’s grandson on Wednesday approached a court in Pune with a criminal defamation complaint, accusing the Gandhi scion of making false allegations against Savarkar during his address in London.
The grandson, Satyaki Savarkar, said his lawyers have moved the city court with a complaint under sections 499 and 500 of the Indian Penal Code.
“Since the concerned court officer was absent today, they asked us to come again on Saturday to get the number of the case. We have not received the case number yet and we will receive it on Saturday,” PTI quoted Satyaki Savarkar as saying.
(With PTI inputs)
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