Guwahati: Congress Vice President Rahul Gandhi was on Thursday granted relief by a local court in a criminal defamation case filed against him by a RSS functionary.
Gandhi appeared as accused before the court of the Chief Judicial Magistrate Kamrup and was granted Personal Recognisance (PR) bond as he appeared personally and in deference to his status as a Member of Parliament, his lawyer Anshuman Bora told reporters outside the high security Court.
“We had made a bail application for him but as Rahul Gandhi appeared in person the court allowed him to go on PR bond. The next date of hearing has been fixed for November 5”, Bora said.
Complainant ‘Bibhag Chanchalak’ of RSS, Anjan Bora’s, counsel Bijon Mahajan told journalists, “We did not oppose the bail application as per the complainant’s advice”. Gandhi has to be present personally again on November 5 when the court will explain to him his offence. The complainant had filed a criminal defamation case against Gandhi that he had brought down the image of the RSS by saying he was not allowed by RSS members to enter Barpeta Satra, a 16th century Vaishnavite monastery, in Assam on December 12, 2015.
CJM Sanjoy Hazarika in his August 6 order had stated, “The statement of Rahul Gandhi so published in dailies as well as in media appears to be defamatory in nature .”And, therefore, the complainant prima facie fulfils the ingredients of Section 499 IPC. And accordingly I find sufficient material to proceed against Rahul Gandhi to face trial under Section 500 IPC.” Section 500 of the IPC contains quantum of punishment which may extend to two years or with fine or with both.