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Rahul Gandhi Challenges Bombay High Court Order Allowing Fresh Documents In Defamation Case

The magistrate's court in Bhiwandi, nestled within the Thane district of Maharashtra, granted Kunte the green light to submit these new documents during June of this year.

Congress MP Rahul Gandhi in Wayanad, Kerala.
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Rahul Gandhi, Congress leader and prominent political figure, has taken a decisive step by approaching the Bombay High Court in a recent development that adds new layers to an ongoing legal saga. The backdrop of this situation revolves around a criminal defamation complaint filed by Rajesh Kunte, an RSS worker, against Gandhi.

Gandhi's legal move stems from a lower court's decision to allow Kunte to present fresh and additional documents as part of his defamation case. Interestingly, Gandhi's argument rests on a prior ruling by another bench of the high court in 2021, which supposedly prohibited Kunte from introducing any new documents at that time. This apparent contradiction forms the crux of Gandhi's plea to the court, as PTI reported. 

The magistrate's court in Bhiwandi, nestled within the Thane district of Maharashtra, granted Kunte the green light to submit these new documents during June of this year. However, this decision has sparked contention as Gandhi's legal representation contends that the magistrate's order is both "completely illegal and prejudicial."

At the heart of this legal dispute is Kunte's assertion that Gandhi's statements, accusing the RSS (Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh) of being involved in Mahatma Gandhi's assassination, are false and defamatory. This incendiary claim has propelled the case into the spotlight, drawing attention from various quarters.

In a recent court hearing, Justice S V Kotwal presided over Gandhi's petition. Notably, the justice's stance aligned with the principle of continuity, suggesting that since a similar bench of the high court had dealt with Kunte's request to include additional documents, it would be fitting for the same bench to consider Gandhi's plea. The judge's perspective underscores the importance of consistency and maintaining the context set by prior legal proceedings.

As the legal narrative continues to unfold, it's evident that the battle of documents plays a pivotal role. Kunte's submission includes portions of a petition filed by Gandhi back in 2014, where he contested the summons issued to him by the Bhiwandi court at the time. This submission also incorporates a transcript of Gandhi's speech, sourced from a CD containing the purported live telecast of the address. Notably, this speech has been annexed as an exhibit to the aforementioned petition. However, this legal tussle isn't new to Gandhi, as his 2014 petition had met dismissal by the high court in 2015.

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