Delhi court allows Rahul Gandhi's appeal for issuance of fresh passport

A court in Delhi has allowed the plea filed by Congress leader Rahul Gandhi seeking issuance of a fresh passport.

The Additional Chief Metropolitan Magistrate Vaibhav Mehta in his order said that the no objection certificate (NOC) in respect of the passport will be valid for three years.

The order means that Gandhi will have to approach the Court for NOC after 3 years.

Rahul Gandhi in his plea had asked passport for ten years.

Rahul Gandhi had surrendered his diplomatic passport after he was disqualified as a Member of Parliament (MP).Rahul Gandhi had approached the court seeking NOC for fresh passport.

Rahul Gandhi was disqualified as an MP after being convicted for criminal defamation on March 23 for his remark "all thieves have Modi surname" which he had made at an election rally in Karnataka's Kolar in 2019.

In his speech, Rahul Gandhi had linked Prime Minister Narendra Modi with fugitives like Nirav Modi and Lalit Modi.

During the election rally in Kolar, he said Nirav Modi, Lalit Modi, Narendra Modi. How come all the thieves have 'Modi' as a common surname?"

A former BJP Member of Legislative Assembly (MLA)Purnesh Modi, took exception to the said speech and said that Gandhi humiliated and defamed persons with the Modi surname.

The magistrate court in Surat accepted the contention of Modi that by his speech, Gandhi has intentionally insulted the people with a 'Modi' surname.

A sessions judge refused to stay the Magistrate court conviction. Appeal against the same is pending before the High Court which is slated to pronounce its verdict in June.

The fresh passport for Rahul Gandhi was opposed by BJP leader Subramanian Swamy.

Subramanian Swamy was the main complainant in the National Herald case which talks about the assignment of a ₹90 crore loan advanced by the Congress party to Associated Journals Ltd (AJL), the owner of the National Herald, to Young Indian for a consideration of ₹50 lakh.

Swamy said that the NOC should be given to Rahul Gandhi only for a year. Swamy said in his written statement that the same should be reviewed annually or as deemed fit by the Court,

Swamy argued that it is submitted, the Application is devoid of any merit for issuance of Passport for 10 years.

Swamy said that it is humbly submitted, this Hon’ble Court, may exercise the discretion to grant permission after scrutinizing and analyzing all other correlated matters in deciding on the litigation of the Applicant in the broad spectrum of areas of justice and law.