Blaming the RSS for Mahatma Gandhi's assassination has put Congress vice-president Rahul Gandhi in a tight spot. Hearing a defamation case into the matter, the Supreme Court on July 19 has asked Rahul to apologise or face trial for making "collective denunciations".
Supreme Court's observation
The apex court said, "If you won't apologise, you will have to face trial."
"We will examine whether what the petitioner (Rahul) said comes within the ambit of defamation," the Supreme Court said and adjourned the case to July 27.
"You can't make denunciation of an organisation," SC said giving ultimatum to Rahul Gandhi.
While addressing a public rally at Sonale in Bhiwandi (Thane district of Maharashtra) on March 6, 2014 Rahul had alleged it was "RSS people" who had killed Mahatma Gandhi.
"RSS people killed Gandhiji and today their people (BJP) talk of him...They opposed Sardar Patel and Gandhiji," he had said.
He had also ridiculed senior BJP leaders for claiming credit for introducing computers in India.
Rahul's moves so far
Earlier, Rahul had petitioned the court to cancel the defamation case filed by an RSS activist against him for allegedly blaming the organisation for the Mahatma's.
In November 2015, he had refused to settle the case and told the Supreme Court that he would prefer to argue his case.
|Will Rahul Gandhi stop pointing an accusing finger at the RSS over Mahatma Gandhi's assassination now?|
It is a jolt to Rahul who had petitioned the court to cancel the case.
Worse, now the Nehru-Gandhi scion has to either apologise to the RSS for blaming it or face trial. This should worry the Congress. It calls for the legal brains in the party such as Kapil Sibal and Abhishek Manu Singhvi to put their heads together and plan a strategy to come out of this embarrassing situation.
Rahul and Congress president Sonia Gandhi are already embroiled in a legal battle in the National Herald alleged cheating case. The RSS defamation case is another headache for Rahul.
This will put him on the defensive because he does not want to either say sorry or face trial.
The Supreme Court's observation sends a message not only to Rahul but all others too not to make a sweeping statement against the RSS, holding the whole organisation responsible for the Mahatma's assassination. RJD supremo Lalu Prasad indirectly, but strangely, had stretched the argument to blame even the BJP and Prime Minister Narendra Modi for Gandhi's assassination.
In a tweet posted on Gandhi Jayanti in 2015 and in the run up to the Bihar Assembly elections, Lalu said, "Question: Who follows Godse? Answer: RSS; Question: Who follows RSS? Answer: BJP; Question: Who is running the BJP? Answer: Modi. (Question: Bapu ke hatyare Godse ko kaun poojhta hai, Answer: RSS; Question: RSS ko kaun poojta hai, Answer: BJP; Question: BJP ko kaun chala raha hai, Answer: Modi; to hatyara kaun hua?)
Q- ???? ?? ??????? ????? ?? ??? ????? ???A- RSSQ- ?????? ?? ??? ????? ???A- BJPQ-?????? ?? ??? ??? ??? ???A- ?????? ??????? ??? ????— Lalu Prasad Yadav (@laluprasadrjd) October 2, 2015
While it is a huge embarrassment for Rahul, conversely the RSS and the BJP have now got a handle to get back at him and all others.
Now, public figures like Rahul and Lalu will have to think twice before painting everyone with one brush and vitiating the political atmosphere. Till the case is decided, they will have to stop making such generalised remarks.