New Delhi: Congress President Rahul Gandhi on Monday filed his reply before the Supreme Court in connection with a contempt case against him for his “chowkidar chor hai” remark on Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
Rahul, in his today’s affidavit filed before a bench headed by Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi, reiterated his stand but did not apologise and expressed only regret for his comment.
“The answering Respondent (Rahul) has not done nor remotely intended to do anything to lower the majesty of this Hon’ble Court in any manner whatsoever,” the reply read.
In his reply filed against the contempt petition against him, the Congress president said, “The answering Respondent’s (Rahul Gandhi) brief statement to the mediawalas was made in this context of and during hectic political campaigning without having seen, read or analysed the order at that stage.”
Rahul clarified that he did not intend to disrepute the top court by bringing it into the political battle. “…It is clarified that the answering Respondent did not have the slightest or remotest intention, desire or even thought process, to bring the court into the political arena or bring it into disrepute or attribute to it deliberately or willfully that which the court had not said or meant,” he said.
He added that consideration of the review petition on merits gave rise to an impression in his mind that the court found sufficient grounds to re-examine the matter, in view of the fact that the review petition had raised serious issues about the concealment of information by the government.
Accusing Lekhi of filing the petition for political gains, Gandhi said, “Although the words of the specific statements attributed to the answering Respondent are available in the public domain and are largely not controverted…it is the meaning, interpretation, implication and effect of the words which are deliberately sought to be distorted and made tendentious by the petitioner for political purposes,” the reply stated.
The fresh affidavit filed before the bench also comprising justices Deepak Gupta and Sanjiv Khanna comes while the court was hearing a plea filed by BJP leader Meenakshi Lekhi. In her plea, Lekhi had alleged that Rahul made contemptuous remarks in connection with the court's order on the admissibility of a certain document in the Rafale deal.
The contempt petition accused Gandhi of misquoting the order when he said the apex court had accepted that 'chowkidar' (a reference to Prime Minister Modi), is a "chor' (thief).
The apex court also ruled that it will hear this petition filed by Lekhi along with the pending review petition against the verdict in Rafale case on April 30.
Earlier, the Supreme Court had issued a formal contempt notice against Gandhi for claiming that the court said ‘Chowkidar Chor Hai’ while hearing the admissibility of some documents in the fighter jet scam recently.
The top court had on April 10 dismissed the Centre's preliminary objections claiming "privilege" over three Rafale documents cited in petitions seeking review of the December 14 verdict on the fighter deal.
In a unanimous judgement, the court had allowed the admissibility of the three documents and said the review pleas will be heard on merits.
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Updated Date: Apr 29, 2019 15:43:16 IST