The Gujarat High Court on Friday was able to emancipate the judgment on Congress leader Rahul Gandhi’s plea seeking a stay on his defamation case in a criminal defamation case in which he has been condemned to two years of imprisonment by a Surat court.
Justice Hemant Prachchhak had taken notice of the petition in April and May while the controversies were inferred on May 2.
Gandhi’s counsel, Abhishek Manu Singhvi, the senior advocate, while seeking a stay on the conviction, had told the HC that by negating Gandhi’s plea for a stay on conviction in such a case of alleged criminal defamation, the court will be “rewriting” the extent of CrPC Section 389.
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HC on the defamation case
The HC was also told that the trial was vitiated and that the conviction is neither an offense of moral depravity nor does it comprise a solemn offense, as defined under various appraisals. Singhvi had raised irreversible outcomes from the conviction, including re-election to Gandhi’s seat, which cannot be backfired by a court of law.
On March 23, a Surat magistrate court censured Gandhi to two years of simple imprisonment in a whine of illicit defamation filed by Surat West MLA Purnesh Modi, over his remark “Why all thieves share the Modi surname” during a political campaign at Kolar in Karnataka in April 2019.
Following the verdict, Gandhi, who then represented Kerala’s Wayanad in the Lok Sabha, was disqualified as an MP under the provisions of the Representation of the People Act.
A stay on the conviction by the High Court would pave the way for Gandhi’s reinstatement as an MP.
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