GUWAHATI: An Uttarakhand court has summoned Assam Chief Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma following allegations of making derogatory remarks about Congress leader Rahul Gandhi during the 2022 Uttarakhand assembly election campaign.
CM Sarma is required to appear in court on September 21 to address these allegations.
The summons come on the back of a complaint lodged by Uttarakhand Congress spokesperson Ganesh Upadhyay, who asserts that Sarma defamed Rahul Gandhi and his mother, Sonia Gandhi, at a public rally in February 2022.
At the heart of the complaint is Sarma’s contention from the rally where he celebrated the surgical strike in Pakistan led by General Bipin Rawat and then took a jibe at Gandhi, suggesting the Congress leader was always demanding proof.
“Under General Bipin Rawat’s leadership, who was the pride of Uttarakhand and the nation, India conducted a surgical strike in Pakistan. Rahul Gandhi then asked for proof. Have we ever asked of which father’s son you are? What right do you have to ask for proof from the armed forces?” Sarma had said.
Upadhyay claims these remarks not only questioned Gandhi’s lineage but were also inflammatory, amounting to a misuse of the Information Technology Act.
In response to Upadhyay’s complaint, Udham Singh Nagar district and sessions court has directed CM Sarma to appear before them on September 21.
This isn’t the first time CM Sarma finds himself embroiled in controversy over his comments.
In July, complaints were lodged against him by the CPI(M) and an Independent Rajya Sabha MP, accusing him of making an alleged “hate speech” against the “Miya” community, referring to the Bengali-speaking Muslims of Assam.
In addition to this, the state Trinamool Congress penned a letter to Chief Justice of India D Y Chandrachud, seeking judicial action against Sarma for his remarks against the same community.
As the court date approaches, it remains to be seen how CM Sarma will address these latest charges against him.