Gauri Lankesh was killed near her home in Bengaluru in September 2017.
A Mumbai court has summoned Congress president Rahul Gandhi and CPI(M) general secretary Sitaram Yechury after a defamation complaint was filed by an RSS worker for allegedly linking journalist Gauri Lankesh’s murder with the ideology of “BJP-RSS”.
In 2017, lawyer Dhrutiman Joshi had filed a complaint against Rahul Gandhi, his mother and UPA chairperson Sonia Gandhi, the CPI (M) and its chief Yechury. Magistrate P K Deshpande ordered “process be issued” against Rahul Gandhi and Yechury. However, he dismissed the complaint against Sonia and the CPI(M), saying a party could not be held liable for comments made by their party leaders. The matter will be further heard on March 25.
Gauri Lankesh was killed near her home in Bengaluru in September 2017. A right-wing extremist group is said to be behind the attack. In his plea, Joshi has alleged that just a day after the journalist’s death, Rahul Gandhi told media persons, “Anybody who speaks against the ideology of the BJP, against the ideology of the RSS is pressured, beaten, attacked and even killed”.
Yechury had also said that that it was the RSS’ ideology and the RSS men who killed Lankesh. The journalist was known for her criticism of right-wing politics, he alleged. The lawyer claimed that these statements by politicians harmed the image of the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS). A case of criminal defamation under IPC section 500 be registered against Rahul Gandhi, Sonia Gandhi, Yechury and CPI(M).