- The Congress leader has been accused of making defamatory remark about Modi community ahead of 2019 elections
Surat: Congress leader Rahul Gandhi arrived in Surat on Thursday morning. After a briefing with his lawyer, he headed to the court where he was to appear before the court in a defamation case filed against him for his remarks ahead of 2019 Lok Sabha elections.
Ahead of his visit, senior leaders of Gujarat Pradesh Congress Committee (GPCC), including its president Amit Chavda, Leader of Opposition in state Assembly Paresh Dhanani and state working president Hardik Patel had reached the city. They welcomed him at the airport on Thursday morning. Former GPCC president Arjun Modhwadia as well as Congress MP and party’s national spokesperson Shaktisinh Gohil, too, were present.
Rahul Gandhi accused of defamation
The case for which Rahul Gandhi is in Surat was filed by BJP MLA Purnesh Modi. He had accused the Congress leader of making defamatory references to the Modi community ahead of the Lok Sabha elections in 2019. The complaint had been filed under IPC sections 499 and 500 in April 2019.
At that time, during one of his election gatherings, he had said, “Nirav Modi, Lalit Modi, Narendra Modi, they all have a common surname. How come all thieves have Modi as common surname?”
He had later pleaded not guilty and had sought permanent exemption for appearing for the hearing. However, that was challenged by Modi’s lawyer.
Gandhi ‘ignores’ eager party workers
After his arrival, Rahul Gandhi’s lawyer and senior advocate Kirit Panwala briefed him. They had an interaction in the VIP lounge of the airport. Gandhi is to give his final statement in the case. The examination of the prosecution witnesses had been completed.
According to sources, party workers had been waiting to welcome Gandhi outside the airport since early morning. However, he did not stop to greet them, leaving many of them miffed.
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