New Delhi: Ashok Gehlot-led Congress government in Rajasthan removed state’s standing counsel in Supreme Court Ruchi Kohli who had filed a criminal contempt petition against party president Rahul Gandhi in the apex court.
Rajasthan government swung into action after it was noticed that advocate Ruchi Kohli is the Advocate-on-Record for the petition filed by BJP MP Meenakshi Lekhi against Gandhi.
The state government, according to the sources, found it embarrassing that one of its own lawyers played a key role in seeking action against the ruling party’s president over his contentious statements in the Rafale matter.
The administration started contemplating action since Friday last week - - the day when the petition was filed and mentioned for urgent listing before the CJI.
Sources said that the decision to remove Kohli from the panel of Rajasthan's standing counsel in the Supreme Court was taken on Saturday by the state’s law secretary.
Kohli was subsequently informed about the decision.
The Supreme Court had also heard Lekhi's petition on Monday and sought a reply from Gandhi over attribution of certain statements against Prime Minister Narendra Modi to the Supreme Court in the Rafale case.
The CJI's bench clarified that it had never said anything against the PM, which has been attributed to the court by Rahul.
On a day, the Supreme Court had allowed fresh documents to be relied upon in the bunch of review petitions in the Rafale case, the Congress leader had attributed the court to having held that 'Chowkidar chor hai'.
It decided to seek an explanation from Gandhi, after noting that "views, observations attributed to this court in alleged address made by him to the media has been incorrectly attributed to this court."
It pointed out that the court had no occasion to record such views and observations.
"We decided on legal questions of admissibility of some documents. Having clarified, we deem it proper to seek a reply," ordered the bench.
Kohli has been on the panel of the Rajasthan government for the last five years.
After the new government came to power, while the Ashok Gehlot government continued with her assistance in the top court, advocate Manish Singhvi was appointed as the Additional Advocate General in the Supreme Court.