New Delhi / Rahul Gandhi let off in contempt case Over ‘Chowkidar Chor Hai’ with a warning from Supreme Court

Hindustan Times : Nov 14, 2019, 11:59 AM

Rahul Gandhi, who had run into trouble over remarks that attributed his political slogan over the Rafale deal to the judges, was let off by the Supreme Court on Thursday that decided to close a contempt case filed against the Congress leader.

BJP Lok Sabha member Meenakshi Lekhi had filed the contempt plea against Gandhi for incorrectly attributing his political slogan “chowkidar chor hai” to the judges.

A bench of the top court on Thursday said the matter was confounded after the affidavit filed by Gandhi gave no unconditional apology. “In view of better sense prevailed we do not proceed. Contemnor [Rahul Gandhi] should be more careful in future,” the court said.

Lekhi, in her petition, had alleged that Gandhi had twisted the Supreme Court’s April 10 judgment to claim that the court declared Prime Minister Narendra Modi guilty of corrupt practices in purchase of 36 Rafale aircraft.

In an affidavit filed in the court, Gandhi had expressed regret over his comments and said they were made in the heat of the campaign for the April-May Lok Sabha polls.

Gandhi had to a file a fresh petition after the petition after the top court wasn’t convinced that his earlier affidavit expressed regret. “You take 22 pages to express regret… but where is the complete regret,” Chief Justice of India Ranjan Gogoi had told Gandhi’s lawyer Abhishek Singhvi.

In his previous affidavits, Gandhi had told the court that his remarks were not meant to obstruct administration of justice or scandalise the court in any manner. He had also urged the court to dismiss Lekhi’s contempt petition and impose a fine on her for dragging the court into a political controversy.