RSS slapping cases because I fight for the poor: Rahul Gandhi in Guwahati court over temple row

Congress Vice-President Rahul Gandhi arrived in Guwahati on Thursday to appear before a local court in a defamation case filed against him by the RSS.

Speaking to reporters near Kamrup court in Guwahati, Rahul thanked the people of Assam for showing him so much love. "I have always been against the ideology of RSS. Not just RSS, but every other organisation which aims at dividing the nation. I am for the unity of this country."

The fact that RSS is slapping cases against him in such numbers is because he fights for the poor and bats for the youth of the nation, Rahul alleged.

The case is regarding Gandhi's visit to the Barpeta Satra, a 16th-century Vaishnavite monastery on 12 December last year. He was supposed to enter the Satra before taking part in a roadshow, organised nearby, but did not do so and instead hit the road show directly.

Congress vice-president Rahul Gandhi. AFP

Congress vice-president Rahul Gandhi. AFP

Later in New Delhi, he told media persons that some RSS workers prevented him from entering the Satra. He also alleged that the RSS have incited the local women to prevent him from entering the Satra.

An RSS volunteer filed the defamation suit against Gandhi not only denying the role of RSS into the incident but also alleging that Gandhi's statement to media in New Delhi had tarnished the image of Satra.

Kamrup chief judicial magistrate Sanjoy Hazarika had summoned Gandhi to face trial under Section 500 of the Indian Penal Code (IPC) which states, whoever defames another shall be punished with simple imprisonment for a term which may extend to two years or with fine or both.

On 2 August, the court had deferred its decision whether to issue summons against the Congress vice president as an “accused” in the criminal defamation case.

A spokesman for Congress' state unit said that Gandhi will appear before the court at around 10.30 am. Later he is also expected to address a meeting of party workers before returning to New Delhi Thursday evening.

Another RSS volunteer from Maharashtra's Bhiwandi slapped a defamation case against the Congress scion alleging that Rahul, at an election rally, blamed the RSS for Gandhi's death. Kunte, according to PTI, said that the Congress leader had sought to tarnish the reputation of the Sangh through his speech. Kunte then filed the defamation suit in a Maharashtra court.

With inputs from agencies

Updated Date: Sep 29, 2016 11:45 AM

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