Former Congress president Rahul Gandhi on April 25 moved the Gujarat High Court seeking a stay on his conviction in a criminal defamation case after the Surat Sessions Court rejected his plea. Advocate Pankaj Champaneri, who will appear for Mr. Gandhi, said, ” We have filed an appeal challenging the Surat district court’s order.”
The case will be registered on the records of the court following which a date for listing of the case before a single judge court will be posted. Advocate BM Mangukiya said that the revision application has been filed under CrPC section 397 at 4 pm Tuesday, primarily on the grounds that the punishment of two years for criminal defamation is disproportionate and that irreversible damage has been caused that has led to Rahul Gandhi losing membership of the Lower House of Parliament.
Earlier, a Surat court of additional sessions Judge Robin Mogera on April 20 had rejected Gandhi’s plea seeking a stay on the conviction, observing that “if such power is exercised in a casual and mechanical manner, the same would have serious impact on the public perception on the justice delivery systems and such order will shake public confidence in judiciary.”
It may be noted here that during Lok Sabha election in 2019, addressing a rally in Karnataka’s Kolar, Rahul Gandhi gave a statement about Modi surname during election campaign. BJP leader Purnesh Modi had filed a defamation case against Rahul Gandhi with Surat court. A Surat magistrate court on March 23 had convicted Gandhi to two years imprisonment for criminal defamation in the complaint.