Home » News » Supreme Court Rejects Bid to Quash Criminal Case Against Congress Leader Pawan Khera for PM Modi Remarks

The legal saga surrounding Congress leader Pawan Khera unfolded as` he faced criminal proceedings for his controversial ‘Narendra Gautam Das Modi’ remark during a press conference in February 2023. This led to multiple FIRs, his arrest by Assam police and subsequent legal battles. Pawan Khera sought relief from the Supreme Court securing interim bail and later faced consolidated FIRs transferred to Lucknow. Despite attempts to quash the charges, the Allahabad High Court’s dismissal prompted Khera to file a Special Leave Petition culminating in the Supreme Court’s January 4 decision to reject his plea.


Pawan Khera v. State of Uttar Pradesh & Anr., Special Leave Petition (Criminal) No. 13143 of 2023

Coram: Justices BR Gavai and Sandeep Mehta

  • Congress leader and spokesperson Pawan Khera found himself entangled in controversy following his ‘Narendra Gautam Das Modi’ remark during a February 2023 press conference resulting in multiple FIRs and his arrest by Assam police.
  • Khera faces charges under various sections of the Indian Penal Code including promoting communal enmity, imputations prejudicial to national integration, defamation and insult with intent to provoke breach of peace.
  • Arrested on 23 February at the Delhi airport, Khera secured temporary relief from the Supreme Court which granted him interim bail until the next hearing. This interim relief was subsequently extended multiple times maintaining his release until March 17.
  • On March 20, the Supreme Court consolidated the FIRs from Varanasi and Assam transferring them to Hazratganj police station in Lucknow, Uttar Pradesh. Khera was allowed to seek regular bail before the jurisdictional court.
  • In August, a local court in Lucknow granted bail to Khera. Despite approaching the Allahabad High Court to quash the summons order and chargesheet along with tendering an unconditional apology, Khera’s plea was dismissed.
  • Justice Rajeev Singh noted the inability to assess evidence during ongoing proceedings under Section 482 of the Code of Criminal Procedure and directed Khera to present his arguments in accordance with the Supreme Court’s March 20 directive before the jurisdictional court.
  • The Petitioner has filed a Special Leave Petition before the Hon’ble Supreme Court to quash the criminal case against him.

A bench comprising Justices BR Gavai and Sandeep Mehta heard the special leave petition challenging the Allahabad High Court’s decision not to quash criminal proceedings against Pawan Khera. The proceedings were initiated following Khera’s purported ‘Narendra Gautam Das Modi’ comment during a Mumbai press conference.

On January 4, the Supreme Court dismissed Pawan Khera’s plea seeking the quashing of criminal proceedings related to his alleged remark about Prime Minister Narendra Modi.


In a significant development, the Supreme Court with Justices BR Gavai and Sandeep Mehta on the bench delivered a verdict on January 4 dismissing Pawan Khera’s plea to quash criminal proceedings related to his controversial remarks about Prime Minister Narendra Modi. The legal journey marked by arrests, interim reliefs and jurisdictional shifts underscores the complexities of free speech and legal scrutiny in the realm of political discourse. The decision leaves Khera to address the charges in accordance with the court’s directives concluding a chapter in this legal controversy.

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