Where's apology? SC asks Rahul Gandhi, gives another chance to rectify 'chowkidar' blunder
The Supreme Court Tuesday gave another opportunity to Congress President Rahul Gandhi to file one more affidavit relating to his alleged contemptuous "chowkidar chor hai" remark, which the apex court said was wrongly attributed to it.
When Gandhi's counsel Abhishek Manu Singhvi submitted that the Congress chief has apologised for attributing to the court the "chowkidar chor hai" remark, the SC asked where is the word apology written in the affidavit.
You have mentioned the word "regret" once in your 22-page reply but where is apology, the court asked.
The court observed that the contents of the affidavit filed by the Congress President was contradictory on separate pages in the affidavit.
"We have a great difficulty in understanding what you want to say in the affidavit," the court told Singhvi adding that at one point the Congress chief is admitting the mistake and at one point denying of making contemptuous remarks. Singhvi replied saying the use of word regret in the affidavit is like an apology for wrongly attributing the remark which was never made by the apex court.
Singhvi told the apex bench: "There were three errors on my part and I sincerely apologise. I say sorry for attributing the 'Chowkidar' comment to the SupremeCourt." The bench headed by Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi said: "Where have you said all this in your affidavit?"
The top court told Gandhi's counsel that it was not concerned with the political stand narrated in the affidavit.
Mukul Rohatgi appearing for BJP MP Meenakshi Lekhi said: "He claims to be a literate person. But in the affidavit he said: I didn't read or analyse the order when I made this comment. Three hours later, he repeats it at a different rally. What kind of regret is he talking about?"
Giving Gandhi the third chance, the bench said it should not, however, be viewed as an acknowledgement of past affidavits. The court on May 6, will consider the admissibility of the new affidavit.
After the hearing Singhi said Gandhi will file another affidavit by Monday to express apology.
"Rahul Gandhi deeply regrets the attribution of 'chowkidar chor hai' or suggestion that this slogan was said or meant to be said by the Supreme Court. I have clarified in the affidavit itself that this was neither the remotest intention of Rahul Gandhi nor could he have so intended because no court will adopt or endorse this slogan,” Singh told the media outside the court.
“Having said that we pointed out the circumstances in which by mistake this was done. We ourselves quoted the three offending portions for which Rahul Gandhi has expressed regret in writing. We made it clear that this regret is for the attribution only....We will, however, as per the kindness of the court time till Monday file an additional affidavit making it very clear unconditionally that for this part of the matter we express apology," he said.
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