NEW DELHI -- Congress today welcomed the Supreme Court order in the National Herald case saying it would give an opportunity to the party to "expose the false and malicious" allegations of complainant Subramanian Swamy, who it claimed has "lost" the case.
Addressing a press conference, Kapil Sibal, who represented the Gandhis and other party leaders in the case, said that the apex court expunging certain observations of the Delhi High Court meant that no one can allege that Sonia and Rahul Gandhi or any party leader in the case have committed any illegality or wrongdoing.
"We are very glad. Now we will have the opportunity to expose false and malicious allegations of Swamy," he said, insisting that with the apex court's order "there is no observation, no conclusion of any judge about any wrongdoing by any party office bearer including Congress President and Congress Vice President".
Asked whether Congress has 'won half the battle' with the order of the apex court today, he remarked "Swamy has lost".
Sibal said he contended before the court that no case of either cheating or breach of trust had been made out. No member of Congress has claimed that he or she was cheated nor has any member of the Congress alleged breach of trust.
He also contended that Swamy had "no locus standi" to complain that the Congress had been cheated and or that breach of trust had been committed by the Congress in regard to those who have donated to the Party or the shareholders of Associated Journals Limited.
"It is now clear that neither Swamy nor those inimical to Congress can rely on any prima facie observations or findings of any Court and allege that the office bearers of Congress including its President, Vice President and others have committed any illegality or wrongdoing," a beaming Sibal said.
Sibal, who is also a senior party leader, hoped that with the apex court order, BJP leaders would be "more circumspect" while making charges against the Congress leadership.
"I do hope that the BJP is a little more circumspect than it has been in the past in latching on to unsubstantiated observations and unsubstantiated findings of a court to allege wrong doing against the Leadership of the Congress party.
"This is the style of the BJP. They latch on to something which is unsubstantiated and like the launching of the satellite, ultimately loose trajectory and fall to the ground quickly," he said.
"We are very glad that now we will have the opportunity in the trial court to in fact expose Dr. Swamy and his false and malicious allegations and the propaganda machinery of the BJP," he added.
Another party spokesman Abhishek Singhvi, who also represented the Gandhis in the case, tweeted: "It is a very satisfactory order as far as our clients are concerned & we will obey it in letter & spirit."
Congress chief spokesman Randeep Surjewala said partymen have a "deep sense of satisfaction" over the Supreme Court decision.
"We have always believed that the remarks, assertions and conclusions recorded by the single bench of Delhi High Court were neither appropriate on the merits of the case nor in accordance with the established tenets of law.
"In fact, these remarks amounted to prejudicing the ongoing judicial process before the trial court. Hon'ble Supreme Court has set aside these remarks and conclusions," he said in a statement.
Besides, he said the Supreme Court has also permitted that all assertions and submissions qua complete innocence, lack of culpability and absence of any crime of any nature on part of Congress leadership can be fairly raised before the trial court.
"Unfortunately, Swamy and his supporters in BJP continue to make irresponsible and misleading statements qua the entire process after raising objections before the Supreme Court. We would request all concerned to respect the fairness and impartiality of judicial process of the country," he added.
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