In a relief for Congress, party vice President Rahul Gandhi was today granted bail by a court in Bhiwandi in Maharashtra’s Thane district in connection with RSS defamation case. In an address to party workers in Bhiwandi, Gandhi lashed out at Prime Minister Narendra Modi over the central government’s decision to demonetise Rs 500 and Rs 1000 currency notes. Casting aspersions over the much debated economic reform, Gandhi said, “You are being made to stand in queues.Your money will be given to select 15-20 industrialists.You all know their names.” Noting that “The masses in India are standing in queue”, he asked, “Do you see any rich person, a big industrialist standing in queue.” He also said, “Those who are real black marketeers, those who have Rs 10-20000 crore, those who go with Modi in planes, action should be taken against them.” Gandhi noted that “There is no investigation or action taken against Modi ji’s industrialists friends.” Sending out a stern message to centre, Gandhi said, “We will raise this issue in parliament; you will see that money he acquires from you, will be used to fill pockets of industrialists.”
Commenting over the case whose next date of hearing on January 28, Gandhi said, “I have come to the court to fight for Gandhiji’s ideology.” “On one hand is ideology of freedom and on other is ideology of slavery. Those I am fighting against want to bend India so they can rule country,” Rahul said after getting bail. The Court granted him bail on personal surety. Addressing Congress supporters who gathered outside the court, Rahul said long queues before banks and ATMs had caused problems for the common man. “Did you get Rs 4000 notes? Did you get indelible ink mark on your hands,” he said.
Earlier, Gandhi attended the proceedings in a court in Bhiwandi in Maharashtra’s Thane district in connection with a criminal defamation case filed against him for claiming, at a 2014 election rally, that the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) had killed Mahatma Gandhi. The case against the Congress vice-president was filed by a local RSS functionary. Rahul reached Mumbai on Tuesday evening. Gandhi was accompanied by former Maharashtra Chief Ministers Ashok Chavan, Prithviraj Chavan and senior Congress leader Gurudas Kamat, a report said. Addressing a rally in the run-up to the 2014 general elections in the powerloom town on the outskirts of Mumbai, Rahul had claimed, “The RSS people had killed Gandhi.” He had, on 1 September, preferred to face the trial as an accused in the defamation case for his remark against the RSS on the assassination of Mahatma Gandhi, submitting before the Supreme Court that he stood by “every word” of his statement.
Ek taraf azaadi ki vichardhara; dusre taraf gulami ki; jinse main ladh raha hoon woh Hindustan ke har vyakti ko jhukana chahte hain: RGandhi pic.twitter.com/9OIFsWYslA
— ANI (@ANI_news) November 16, 2016
The Congress vice-president expressed his readiness to face the trial after the apex court refused to interfere with the criminal proceedings pending against him before the trial court. Rahul then withdrew the appeal filed by him against the Bombay High Court judgment refusing to quash the defamation case and summons issued to him by the trial court. The apex court also declined Rahul’s plea that he be exempted from personal appearance before the Bhiwandi court which had taken cognizance of the complaint of an RSS functionary by summoning him as an accused in the case.