HC dismisses Rahul Gandhi's plea to quash defamation case

  • PTI, Mumbai
  • Updated: Mar 10, 2015 14:12 IST

The Bombay high court on Tuesday dismissed Congress vice president Rahul Gandhi's petition for quashing a defamation case against him for allegedly blaming RSS for the assassination of Mahatma Gandhi.

Justice M L Tahaliyani rejected Rahul's petition seeking to quash the complaint filed by RSS activist Rajesh Kunte before a magisterial court in Bhiwandi in Thane district. The complaint claimed that during last year's Lok Sabha poll, the congress leader had said that a worker of the saffron outfit had killed Mahatma Gandhi.

In his complaint, Kunte, secretary of the Bhiwandi unit of Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh, RSS, had alleged that Rahul Gandhi told an election rally at Sonale on March 6, 2014, that "RSS people killed Gandhiji". He said the Congress vice president had sought to tarnish the reputation of the Sangh through his speech.

Following the complaint, the magistrate's court had initiated proceedings and issued notice to Rahul, directing him to appear before it.

The Congress leader then approached the high court seeking exemption from appearance and quashing of the complaint.

His lawyers argued that the complaint was motivated and malafide and deserved to be quashed.

They argued that no case was made out against Rahul Gandhi and the criminal proceedings initiated against him were part of the BJP's election campaign.

The prosecution had opposed the petition and argued that Rahul can plead his case and lead evidence during trial before the magistrate.

The Bombay high court on Tuesday dismissed the petition and refused to grant stay on its order to allow the Congress leader time to appeal against it in the Supreme Court.

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