New Delhi: Congress leader Rahul Gandhi firmly maintains his innocence in the defamation case and asserts that he has no intention of apologizing. In his reply to the Supreme Court, challenging the Gujarat High Court’s refusal to stay his conviction, Rahul argues that the case against him was based solely on assumptions and conjectures drawn from a WhatsApp screenshot of an IANS Article, and the source of the message remains undisclosed by the respondent, Purnesh Modi.
Rahul highlights that defamation is just one of the 22 offenses under the IPC and attracts only simple imprisonment. He emphasizes that as a Parliamentarian and Leader of the Opposition, it was his duty to critically evaluate the ruling establishment’s conduct and performance, and this should be considered while interpreting his speech’s intention.
Moreover, Rahul points out that defamation is a non-cognizable, bailable, and compoundable offense, which does not fall within the category of offenses against society. He believes that the exceptional award of maximum punishment to him should be a significant consideration for the Court when deciding on the stay of sentence.
Regarding the respondent’s contention that Modis are an identifiable class, Rahul counters that Purnesh Modi’s inconsistent statements create reasonable doubts about the existence of a separate, identifiable, and finite class of people with the Modi surname.
Overall, Rahul Gandhi stands firm in his plea for the Supreme Court to reconsider the conviction and stay of sentence, arguing that the circumstances surrounding the case warrant careful examination and consideration.