Congress president Rahul Gandhi has on Saturday spoken for the first time about the contempt of court petition that has been filed against him and the apology he has subsequently been forced to make to the Supreme Court for attributing his 'Chowkidar Chor Hai' claim to the apex court's order in the Rafale review petitions case.
Addressing a news briefing in New Delhi, Rahul Gandhi was asked about the matter in which he must now file an affidavit on Monday following the Supreme Court bench not being satisfied with the 'expression of regret' mentioned in the earlier two affidavits in the case.
Reiterating his Rafale allegations, Rahul Gandhi, nonetheless, explained why he apologised:
"In the Rafale deal, Chowkidar has stolen Rs 30,000 crore. Now you ask about my apology to the Supreme Court. Absolutely I have apologised to the Supreme Court. I will tell you why. Because a process was ongoing in the Supreme Court and I commented on the process and that isn't my place. So I apologised."
"But 'Chowkidar chor hai' is a slogan, it's the truth, it's a reality. And I am not apologising to Narendra Modi, the BJP or anyone else. I apologised because mid-process I gave an opinion about the Supreme Court and that was a mistake, hence I apologised."
In the earlier affidavits, Rahul Gandhi had said that his 'Supreme Court has said Chowkidar Chor Hai' remark, made after he filed his nomination in Amethi, had been made 'in the heat of political campaigning without access to the court order.'
"Supreme Court ne nyay ke bare mai baat ke hai. Supreme Court said Chowkidar ne chori ke hai (Supreme Court will do justice. Supreme Court said that Chowkidar is involved in a theft)," Rahul Gandhi had said.
Following this remark, BJP MP Meenakshi Lekhi had filed a contempt of court plea against Rahul Gandhi.