Delhi

Remarks against PM Modi: SC dismisses Pawan Khera’s plea seeking quashing of criminal proceedings

A bench of Justices B.R. Gavai and Sandeep Mehta of the apex court said that it was not inclined to entertain the special leave petition moved by Khera.

New Delhi: The Supreme Court on Thursday dismissed a plea filed by Congress spokesperson Pawan Khera against an order of the Allahabad High Court refusing to quash criminal proceedings lodged against him in connection with the alleged objectionable remarks made against Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

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A bench of Justices B.R. Gavai and Sandeep Mehta of the apex court said that it was not inclined to entertain the special leave petition moved by Khera.

“Now you go on seeking apologies and apologies….We are not inclined, sorry,” the bench told senior advocate Salman Khurshid, who appeared on Khera’s behalf.

In October 2023, the apex court had issued notice to the Uttar Pradesh government and the complainant on Khera’s special leave petition as well as on the prayer for interim relief.

Earlier, a bench of Justice Rajeev Singh of the Lucknow High Court had refused to entertain Khera’s contention that he has tendered unconditional apology before the Supreme Court and therefore, all consequent legal proceedings are liable to be quashed.

“The applicant may appear before the jurisdictional court and raise all his grievances before the court below. In view of the above facts and discussions, the application has no merit and is, accordingly, dismissed,” had said the High Court.

In March, 2023, the top court had ordered clubbing of different FIRs registered against Congress spokesperson in Assam and Varanasi and transferred them to Lucknow. Two FIRs were registered against Khera in Uttar Pradesh and one in Assam.

On February 23, 2023 Khera was stopped from boarding a flight to Raipur and was arrested by Assam Police. Within hours, the top court was approached and a bench headed by CJI D.Y. Chandrachud had granted him interim protection from arrest.

In a subsequent hearing, senior advocate Abhishek Manu Singhvi, appearing for Khera, had said that his client would tender his unconditional apology for his objectionable comments.

The Uttar Pradesh and Assam governments had submitted before the apex court that no remorse had been shown by Khera over his comments against the PM despite his counsel tendering an apology in the court.

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