No, This Is Not Justice Pardiwala With Sonia Gandhi & He Was Not a Congress MLA
The viral image showed Sonia Gandhi with former CJI KG Balakrishnan.
A photograph showing a judge standing near Congress president Sonia Gandhi has gone viral with a claim that it shows Justice JB Pardiwala, who was a part of the Supreme Court of India bench that reprimanded suspended Bharatiya Janata Party spokesperson Nupur Sharma recently.
Sharma had filed a plea for clubbing of the FIRs against her in different states over her remarks against Prophet Muhammad. Justices Surya Kant and Pardiwala said they were not convinced with Sharma's plea and advised her lawyers to withdraw it.
The viral claim states that Pardiwala was a Congress MLA in the 1980s, and that he was a Speaker in the 7th Gujarat Legislative Assembly.
However, we found that the claim was false. Firstly, the person standing in the image is former Chief Justice of India KG Balakrishnan. Secondly, JB Pardiwala wasn't a Congress leader or speaker of Gujarat Legislative Assembly. It was his father Burjor Cawasji Pardiwala who held these positions.
The viral claim with the image read, "कन्हैयालाल की हत्याके लिए नुपुर शर्मा जिम्मेदार - सुप्रीम कोर्ट जज जे. बी पारदीवाला (कांग्रेस MLA 1989-90) कुछ समझें ?"
[Translation: Nupur Sharma responsible for Kanhaiyalal's murder - Supreme Court Judge JB Pardiwala (Congress MLA 1989-90) Understand something?
WHAT WE FOUND OUT
We started with conducting a reverse image search of the viral image on Google and while going through the results, we came across a photograph of Gandhi, where she was seen wearing similar clothes as that in the viral image.
The same image was available on stock photo website, Getty Images, and the caption said that Gandhi was at the swearing in ceremony of the then New Chief Justice of Indian KG Balakrishnan.
We then conducted a keyword search for KG Balakrishnan's swearing in ceremony and found an image of him on Getty Images with Gandhi from 2007.
WHAT ABOUT JUSTICE JB PARDIWALA?
According to Justice Pardiwala's profile, available on the Supreme Court's website, he obtained his law degree from KM Law College, Valsad in the year 1988 and started practice at Valsad from January 1989.
The profile mentioned that his father, Burjor Cawasji Pardiwala, was also a lawyer and joined the Bar at Valsad in 1955.
The profile added that Burjor Cawasji was the Speaker of 7th Gujarat Legislative Assembly for period commencing from December 1989 to March 1990.
WHAT DID JUSTICE PARDIWALA SAY ABOUT SHARMA?
The SC bench of Justices Kant and Pardiwala came down heavily upon Sharma on Friday, 1 July, while hearing a plea filed by her for clubbing of the FIRs against her in different states.
"The way she has ignited emotions across the country. This lady is singlehandedly responsible for what is happening in the country. We saw the debate on how she was incited... She should apologise to the whole country," Bar and Bench quoted Justice Surya Kant as saying.
The bench also noted that her outburst lead to the brutal killing of a tailor in Udaipur.
The bench said they were not convinced with Sharma's plea and advised her lawyers to withdraw it, which they subsequently did.
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