Rahul Gandhi files fresh affidavit in Rafale contempt case, expresses ‘regret’
In the affidavit, the Congress leader said he has the “highest esteem” for the judiciary and urged the top court to dismiss Lekhi’s contempt petition and impose a fine on her for dragging the court into a political controversy.Updated: Apr 30, 2019 07:38 IST
Congress president Rahul Gandhi filed another affidavit in the Supreme Court on Monday in response to a formal notice issued to him on a contempt petition filed by Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader Meenakshi Lekhi in connection with his comments related to the Rafale review hearing.
In the affidavit, the Congress leader said he has the “highest esteem” for the judiciary and urged the top court to dismiss Lekhi’s contempt petition and impose a fine on her for dragging the court into a political controversy. Lekhi has asked the court to initiate criminal contempt action against Gandhi for having twisted top court’s April 10 judgement to claim that the court declared Prime Minister guilty of corrupt practices in purchase of 36 Rafale aircrafts.
Gandhi already tendered, on April 22, his “regret” to SC for “juxtaposing” in a “rhetorical flourish in the heat of political campaigning” the court’s ruling that it would allow the use of leaked defence ministry documents in the Rafale review — this was widely seen as a setback for the centre — with his own party’s catchy campaign phrase “Chowkidar chor hai” (the watchman is a thief).
After perusing his explanation, the court, on April 23 issued a formal notice in the case, but exempted Gandhi from personal appearance. Gandhi’s fresh affidavit comes pursuant to the notice. He has reiterated that he had no intention to bring the court into the political arena and did not have the slightest intention to insinuate anything regarding the SC proceedings.