Ahead of the Friday hearing, Congress President Rahul Gandhi on Wednesday tendered his unconditional apology to the Supreme Court for attributing ‘Chowkidar chor hai’ jibe to the apex court.
Filing a three-page affidavit, Gandhi said, “The Deponent unconditionally apologizes for the wrongful attributions to this Hon’ble Court. The Deponent further states that any such attributions were entirely unintentional, non-willful and inadvertent.”
The affidavit comes after Chief Justice of India Ranjan Gogoi refused to accept Gandhi’s previous affidavit that had expressed regret.
Last week, Gandhi was also pulled up by the bench for making contradictory statements in the previously filed two affidavits.
The third affidavit also added that Rahul holds the Supreme Court in the highest esteem and respect and that he has never sought or intended to, directly or indirectly, commit any act that interferes with the process of administration of justice.
Rahul also urged the apex court to accept his apology and close the contempt proceedings, initiated by BJP MP Meenakshi Lekhi.
On April 30, the three-judge bench had pointed out that at one point, Gandhi is admitting the mistake and at another denying having made the contemptuous remarks and had said, “We have great difficulty in understanding what you want to say in the affidavit.”
The bench then gave another opportunity to Gandhi to file a better affidavit relating to his remark, said, “You make the statement and then justify it. You take 22 pages to express regret but where is the complete regret? What is the meaning of expression ‘regret’ used in the bracket in the affidavit?”
On this Singhvi responded, “Regret is the same as an apology. I checked in the dictionary.” But when he didn’t make much headway, Singhvi offered to file a fresh affidavit.
Appearing for petitioner Meenakshi Lekhi, senior lawyer Mukul Rohatgi called the affidavit hogwash in which Rahul had shown no contrition but tried to convert the court proceedings into a political battle.