15th April, 2019
The Supreme Court on Tuesday issued a notice to Congress president Rahul Gandhi over his remarks against Prime Minister Narendra Modi on a contempt petition filed by Meenakshi Lekhi.
The court has sought Rahul's response by April 22.
To Rahul's purported remark that the SC has said that Chowkidar Modi is 'Chor' in Rafale deal, the SC said the remark has been incorrectly attributed to the apex court by Gandhi.
The SC also said that it had no occasion to pass any remark against PM Modi as it was deciding admissibility of certain documents relating to Rafale deal, to which AG had raised certain objections.
In the past, the Congress has repeatedly claimed that SC has found PM Modi to have stolen Rafale deal money and given it to Anil Ambani. Rahul will now have to explain why he attributed a statement to apex court when it had not said so.
The petitioner, BJP's Meenakshi Lekhi, claimed that 'the words used and attributed by him to SC in the Rafale case has been made to appear something else. He is replacing his personal statement as Supreme Court's order and trying to create prejudice'.
The contempt petition, filed by senior advocate Mukul Rohatgi, accused Rahul of misquoting the SC's order on Rafale defence deal when the Congress leader said the apex court had accepted that 'chowkidar' (a reference to Prime Minister Narendra Modi), is a "chor' (thief).
Importantly, a bench led by CJI Ranjan Gogoi said that the court had not passed any remark against PM Narendra Modi, thus holding that Rahul's statements were wrong.
Talking to ANI, Lekhi had said, "Rahul Gandhi has misquoted the Supreme Court's order on the Rafale deal...I am sure the court must have been watching the media where Rahul Gandhi made false claims about the court's order."