NEW DELHI :
The Supreme Court on Thursday dropped contempt proceedings against former Congress president Rahul Gandhi in the contempt petition filed against him by Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) MP Meenakshi Lekhi.
A three-judge bench headed by Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi, however, offered a word of caution to the Congress leader stating that people holding such important positions in the political spectrum must be more careful “as to what should be his campaign line is for a political person to consider".
“Certainly Mr. Gandhi needs to be more careful in future," said the bench which also comprised Justices Sanjay Kishan Kaul and K.M. Joseph.
The apex court also noted in its order that the act of contempt by Gandhi was “unfortunate" since without verification or even perusing the contents of the order, “the contemnor deemed it appropriate to make statements as if this Court had given an imprimatur to his allegations against the Prime Minister, which was far from the truth."
“This was not one sentence or a one-off observation but a repeated statement in different manners conveying the same. No doubt the contemnor should have been far more careful," the court said.
On 10 April, within few hours of the Supreme Court passing its verdict in the Rafale case, Gandhi claimed moral victory and told the media in Amethi that the “Supreme Court ne kaha hai ki, chowkidar hi chor hai" (The SC has said the security guard is a thief).
Gandhi’s “chowkidar" reference was directed at Prime Minister Narendra Modi who has often called himself ‘desh ka chowkidar’ (the nation’s security guard).