Defamation case: K’taka court directs Rahul Gandhi to appear on June 7  

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Defamation case: K’taka court directs Rahul Gandhi to appear on June 7  

Bengaluru: A Special MP/MLA court in Karnataka on Saturday directed Congress leader Rahul Gandhi to appear before it on June 7 in connection with a defamation case filed by Karnataka BJP MLC and former state unit general secretary Keshav Prasad.

The defamation suit filed by Prasad alleges that Congress engaged in propaganda by publishing full-page advertisements accusing the previous BJP government in the state of charging a 40 percent commission, for providing government projects.

Keshav Prasad stated that during the Assembly elections, Chief Minister Siddaramaiah and his deputy, D.K. Shivakumar made false allegations and misguided the people of the state. It was pleaded to punish them under IPC Section 500 for making false charges.

The court has reserved its order on whether to issue a non-bailable warrant against Rahul Gandhi.

Chief Minister Siddaramaiah and Deputy Chief Minister D.K. Shivakumar appeared before the court in the same case and obtained bail.

Rahul Gandhi, who is also a party to the case, remained absent despite giving an undertaking to the court that he would appear on Saturday.

S.A. Ahmed, the counsel for Rahul Gandhi, submitted that his client could not appear in court due to the seventh phase of voting and a meeting of INDIA bloc leaders.

He assured the court that Rahul Gandhi will appear on June 7.

Ramesh Babu, another counsel for Rahul Gandhi, pleaded to the court not to issue an order until June 7, and to grant the Wayanad MP another date for appearance — the third such request.

BJP counsel Vinod Kumar objected to these demands and urged the court to issue a non-bailable arrest warrant against Rahul Gandhi.

Counsel Ahmed countered that the court has the authority to grant Rahul Gandhi time for his appearance.

After hearing their arguments, the court adjourned, reserving its order on the issue.

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