New Delhi: The Top Court also closed the defamation case filed against Congress leader Rahul Gandhi by BJP leader Meenakshi Lekhi for wrongly attributing his “chowkidar chor hai” remark in Rafale case against Prime Minister Narendra Modi to the Top Court. The Bench said that the Court accepted an unconditional apology tendered by the Congress leader in May and warned him to be “more careful” about future remarks.
“…person holding such a position must be careful. (The) Court should not be dragged into political controversy. In view of his apology we close contempt case against Rahul Gandhi. He needs to be more careful in the future,” the Court said this morning.
Meenakshi Lekhi had sued Rahul for comments made on April 10, a day after the Supreme Court ruled classified documents accessed by the media could be used as evidence to consider a review of its earlier decision on the Rafale jet deal. Gandhi, welcoming the order, had said the “Court agreed that chowkidar chor hai”.
Court accepts Rahul’s apology: The Supreme Court had demanded an explanation for the comment, after which the former Congress President issued an “unconditional apology” and said the remark had been made “unintentionally and inadvertently”. In May, Rahul Gandhi filed a three-page affidavit after an earlier one was rejected because it was claimed he had not directly admitted his mistake.
“(Rahul Gandhi) unconditionally apologises for the wrongful attributions to this Honourable Court. The Deponent further states that any such attributions were entirely unintentional, non-wilful and inadvertent,” the new affidavit said.
Gandhi said his statement had been made in the “heat of political campaigning” and that it had been made within a purely political context to counter a “misinformation campaign” regarding some aspects of the Rafale fighter jet deal.