Congress president Rahul Gandhi will on Tuesday appear before a court in Bhiwandi in Maharashtra’s Thane district in connection with a criminal defamation case filed against him by a Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) worker. The Congress president arrived in Mumbai Tuesday morning on a two-day visit to Maharashtra.
On May 2, the court had asked Gandhi to appear before it on June 12 to record his plea in the 2014 defamation case. His court appearance was scheduled at 11 am, a Congress leader earlier said.
RSS worker Rajesh Kunte had filed the case after watching Rahul Gandhi’s speech at an election rally in which he had alleged that the RSS was behind the killing of Mahatma Gandhi. “The RSS people had killed (Mahatma) Gandhi,” the Congress president had allegedly said in the rally.
The Congress president is also expected to address Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation party workers and interact with its corporators during his visit. He is scheduled to meet the kin of Dadaji Khobragade, the rural inventor who revolutionised rice farming, at Chandrapur in Vidarbha on Wednesday, before returning to Delhi. Khobragade, 78, died earlier this month after a prolonged illness.
Contrary to media reports, Rahul Gandhi’s itinerary doesn’t mention any meeting with NCP supremo Sharad Pawar, the leader said. “Top leaders (of both the parties) can meet any time. But no such meeting is on the agenda today,” he said. “Rahulji will appear before the court in the morning, address party workers in the afternoon and interact with Congress corporators on Mumbai’s civic issues,” the leader added.