NEW DELHI, Sept 9 - Faced with a court summon in a defamation case against AICC vice president Rahul Gandhi in Assam over his remarks against Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS), the AICC held a closed-door discussion with Assam Congress leaders on Thursday evening. Gandhi has been asked to appear before the court on September 29.
Former chief minister Tarun Gogoi, PCC president Ripun Bora joined political adviser to Congress president Ahmed Patel and AICC general secretary in-charge for Assam and Northeast Dr CP Joshi here yesterday for a discussion on the defamation case filed against Rahul Gandhi by an RSS worker, AICC sources said.
What would be interesting to watch is the stand the Congress vice president takes in the court in Assam in the light of his ongoing case in the Supreme Court against RSS over his remarks on assassination of Mahatma Gandhi.
The meeting also reviewed the preparedness of the party to fight the Baithalangshu byelection. The Assembly seat fell vacant after sitting MLA Mon Singh Rongpi resigned. The meeting also sought a report from the Assam Congress about its strategy for the 2019 Lok Sabha poll, said sources.
Meanwhile, the party appeared to be concerned over the defamation case in which the Congress vice president was summoned by the Kamrup Metropolitan Court on August 6, over his remark on the RSS.
An RSS volunteer, Anjan Bora had filed a criminal defamation case against Gandhi in the court of Chief Judicial Magistrate, Kamrup, claiming he had tarnished the organisation�s image by saying he was not allowed by its members to enter Barpeta Satra on December 12, 2015.
Bora said Gandhi was supposed to go to the Satra, but he did not do so and instead, took part in a padayatra.
Two days later on December 14, Gandhi told a press conference here that he had tried to enter the Satra but was prevented from doing so by its elected members and RSS supporters.
Gandhi�s claim in Delhi had brought down the image of RSS in society, Bora alleged.
Gandhi had told the Supreme Court on September 1 that he stood by every word he had said linking the RSS to the assassination of Mahatma Gandhi.
The Congress Party has decided to turn the defamation case filed by the RSS against Gandhi into an all-out political and ideological battle against the BJP and RSS.
�This is Rahul Gandhi�s and the Congress�s battle against the divisive ideology of the RSS-BJP combine that is trying to divide India on the basis of religion and caste. It will strengthen and energise all secular forces in this country,� AICC communication chief Randeep Surjewala said.