Defamation of ‘Modi’ surname case: Supreme Court agrees to hear Rahul Gandhi’s plea on July 21

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Today, the Supreme Court of India agreed to hear the appeal filed by Congress leader Rahul Gandhi on July 21, 2023 (Friday). The petition was filed seeking a stay on his conviction order by the Gujarat High Court in the criminal defamation case over the ‘Modi-thieves’ remark. In addition, the plea also challenged the Magistrate Court’s order that imposed a two-year jail term in the same criminal defamation case which resulted in his disqualification as a Member of Parliament. Today, the matter was mentioned for urgent listing by Senior Advocate Dr. Abhishek Manu Singhvi, Gandhi’s counsel, before Chief Justice of India DY Chandrachud. Senior Advocate Singhvi said, “Seeking a Friday or Monday date,” the CJI directed to list the matter on Friday.  

During the 2019 Lok Sabha campaign, Gandhi made a defamation remark over the ‘Modi’ surname because of which a criminal defamation case was filed against him. In his speech, he said, “Nirav ModiLalit ModiNarendra Modi. How come all the thieves have ‘Modi’ as a common surname?” The case was filed by BJP MLA and former Gujarat Minister Purnesh Modi alleging that the comment made by Rahul Gandhi defamed the entire Modi community.