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SC issues notice to Rahul Gandhi over Rafale remarks

4/23/2019

New Delhi, Supreme Court on Tuesday issued notice to Congress president Rahul Gandhi over his alleged remarks on Rafale order. A bench headed by Chief justice Ranjan Gogoi after hearing the arguments from both Gandhi and the petitioner Meenakshi Lekhi said it would hear the case on April 30 along with the review petition filed against the December 14 verdict in the Rafale case. During a media interaction in Amethi, Gandhi had claimed that the apex court’s order has made it "clear" that 'Chowkidar Chor Hai' (Prime Minister is thief) in its Rafale order. Challenging this statement, BJP Parliamentarian Lekhi filed a plea before the apex court and sought criminal contempt against Mr Gandhi for his alleged derogatory remarks against Prime Minister Narendra Modi and attributing his own statements to the order of Supreme Court. On Monday, Mr Gandhi expressed regret over his remarks against Prime Minister Modi and said that he would abstain from attributing any statements to the court in future. He also said that his statements were 'misused' by his political opponents and he made the statement in the heat of the election campaign. He also termed it "unfortunate" that the slogan got intertwined with reference to the SC order. The Apex Court on April 10 had unanimously rejected the Modi government’s claim of privilege as regards the documents that were produced by the petitioners Yashwant Sinha, Arun Shourie, & Prashant Bhushan, regarding the big-ticket deal to purchase Rafale fighter aircraft from France-based Dassault company. A bench, headed by Chief Justice of India Ranjan Gogoi had dismissed the Government stand of not relying on those "leaked documents", and said, the matter would be heard at a later stage on merit and the maintainability of the petitions.

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