Congress leader Rahul Gandhi was found guilty by a Surat Court in a criminal defamation case filed in 2019, and given a two-year prison sentence on March 23 for remarks he made about Prime Minister Narendra Modi's surname. However, the court bailed him in order to allow him to appeal the decision, the sentence was suspended for thirty days.
Purnesh Modi, a BJP MLA and former Gujarat minister, filed the case against Rahul Gandhi for saying, "How come all thieves have the common surname Modi?"
The remarks were made by the Wayanad Lok Sabha MP at a rally in Kolar, Karnataka, in advance of the Lok Sabha elections in 2019. The MP was referring to PM Modi by his last name, which he shares with the fugitive businessmen Nirav Modi and Lalit Modi.
Rahul Gandhi was greeted by senior Congress leaders in Gujarat when he arrived in Surat earlier in the day for the verdict.
As a show of strength and support for Gandhi, party members and supporters gathered at various locations throughout the city. On display were placards proclaiming that the "Congress will not bow before the dictatorship of the BJP" and posters praising Gandhi as "Sher-e-Hindustan" (Lion of India).
The court of Boss Legal Justice HH Varma had last week finished up hearing last contentions from the two sides and said it was prepared to articulate its judgment in the four-year-old slander case, Gandhi's attorney Kirit Panwala had said.
Gandhi had last showed up under the watchful eye of the Surat court for the situation, in October 2021 to record his assertion.
Purnesh Modi, a BJP MLA, claimed in his complaint that Gandhi slammed the Modi community as a whole when he spoke at the 2019 election rally.
During the first term of the Bhupendra Patel government, Purnesh Modi served as a minister. In the elections held in December, he won the Surat West Assembly seat again.
Also read : Rahul Gandhi convicted in 2019 ‘Modi surname’ remarks case, sentenced to 2 years in jail by Surat District Court
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