On August 4, 2023, the Supreme Court made an important decision regarding Congress leader Rahul Gandhi’s case. He was convicted in a criminal defamation case for a comment he made during a political rally back in 2019. However, the Supreme Court’s recent decision has put a pause on this conviction, allowing Mr. Gandhi to return to Parliament. This means he can join the ongoing monsoon session if the Lok Sabha Secretariat agrees to reinstate his membership.
The decision was made by a panel of three judges led by Justice B.R. Gavai, along with Justices P.S. Narasimha and Sanjay Kumar. They found that the trial judge in Gujarat, who had given Mr. Gandhi a two-year prison sentence, did not provide any valid reasons for such a harsh punishment. The court pointed out that the law allows for a choice between imprisonment, a fine, or both, but the trial judge didn’t consider this properly.
Even the Gujarat High Court, which discussed various aspects of the case in a lengthy 120-page judgment, missed addressing the issue of the lack of proper reasons for giving Mr. Gandhi the maximum punishment.
This decision has cleared the way for Rahul Gandhi to actively participate in Parliament once again.