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Modi Surname Defamation Case: Gujarat HC To Deliver Verdict On Rahul Gandhi's Plea Today

After convicting Rahul Gandhi under Indian Penal Code (IPC) sections 499 and 500 (criminal defamation) in a 2019 case filed by Bharatiya Janata Party MLA Purnesh Modi, a metropolitan magistrate's court in Surat sentenced the former Congress president to two years in jail on March 23.

Congress leader Rahul Gandhi
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The Gujarat High Court ia all set to deliver its verdict today on Congress leader Rahul Gandhi's plea seeking a stay on his conviction in a criminal defamation case over his Modi surname remark.

The court of Justice Hemant Prachchhak will deliver the verdict at 11:00 am, as per the causelist issued by the Gujarat HC on Thursday.

All about the case so far

Back in May this year, Justice Prachchhak, had refused to grant any interim relief saying it will pass a final order after the summer vacation, which ended three weeks back.

During a hearing on April 29, Gandhi's lawyer had argued that a maximum punishment of two years for a bailable, non-cognisable offence meant his client could lose his Lok Sabha seat "permanently and irreversibly", which was a "very serious additional irreversible consequence to the person and the constituency he represents".

Despite the arguement, a metropolitan magistrate's court in Surat sentenced the former Congress president to two years in jail on March 23 after convicting him under Indian Penal Code (IPC) sections 499 and 500 (criminal defamation) in a 2019 case filed by Bharatiya Janata Party MLA Purnesh Modi.

As a consuquence of the verdict, Gandhi, elected to the Lok Sabha from Wayanad in Kerala, was disqualified as MP under the provisions of the Representation of the People Act.

Gandhi challenged the order in a sessions court in Surat along with an application seeking a stay on the conviction. While granting him bail, the court, on April 20, refused to stay the conviction, after which he approached the HC.

Surat West MLA Purnesh Modi filed a criminal defamation case against Gandhi over his "how come all thieves have Modi as the common surname?" remark made during an election rally at Kolar in Karnataka on April 13, 2019. 

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