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Updated on: Monday, November 22, 2021, 10:19 PM IST

FPJ Legal: In a relief, Bombay HC asks local court to defer hearing in complaint against Rahul Gandhi beyond December 20

Congress leader Rahul Gandhi | File Photo

Congress leader Rahul Gandhi | File Photo

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In a relief for Congress leader Rahul Gandhi, the Bombay High Court has said that former Congress chief need not appear before a local magistrate which had summoned him following a defamation suit filed by a Bhartiya Janata Party (BJP) member.

Justice SK Shinde on Monday asked the magistrate to defer hearing in a defamation suit against Gandhi beyond December 20.

The magistrate had summoned Gandhi to personally remain present on November 25 in a defamation suit filed by one Mahesh Shrishrimal, claiming to be BJP member.

Gandhi challenged this summons before the HC.

During the hearing on Monday, 22 November 2021 Shrishrimal advocate, Rohan Mahadik, sought time to file affidavit replying to Gandhi’s plea.

Sudeep Pasbola, Gandhi’s advocate said they didn’t have any objection if time was granted but sought that the proceedings before the magistrate be stayed.

Justice Shinde adjourned the hearing to December 16 and asked Shrishrimal to file his reply.

“In the meanwhile, the Metropolitan Magistrate shall defer proceedings into the complaint beyond December 20,” said Justice Shinde.

Gandhi’s plea before the HC states that he was not aware of the complaint before July 12, 2021, when he received the summons from the local court.

According to the complaint, in September 2018, Gandhi had conducted a rally In Rajasthan. During the said rally, he made defamatory statements against the Prime Minister Narendra Modi. Due to this , Modi was allegedly trolled on media by various news channels and social media platforms.

The complaint further claimed that four days after that, Gandhi purportedly commented on a video which was posted on social media. He then posted the same video on his personal twitter account with further defamatory comment.

The complainant alleged that Gandhi was making defamatory statements against Modi and as such made direct allegation against all members of BJP and Indian citizens connected to Modi.

He has further contended that the order of summons was of a mechanical nature and did not contain any reasoning which is required for issuing process against a person.

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Published on: Monday, November 22, 2021, 10:19 PM IST
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