ECI issues notice to BJP on PM Modi's Banswara speech

Notice was also taken of BJP complaints against Mallikarjun Kharge and Rahul Gandhi

The Election Commission has taken note of alleged violations of the model code of conduct by Prime Minister Narendra Modi (photo: IANS)
The Election Commission has taken note of alleged violations of the model code of conduct by Prime Minister Narendra Modi (photo: IANS)


Taking cognisance for the first time of a Model Code violation allegation against a prime minister, the Election Commission on Thursday, 25 April, asked the BJP to respond to complaints filed by Opposition parties wherein they have accused Prime Minister Narendra Modi of delivering a divisive and defamatory speech in Rajasthan's Banswara.

At the same time, the poll panel also asked the Congress to respond to complaints filed by the BJP against the main Opposition party's president Mallikarjun Kharge and its senior leader Rahul Gandhi regarding their respective remarks on different occasions.

In its letter addressed to BJP president J.P. Nadda, the Election Commission asked him to respond by Monday, 29 April, to complaints filed by the Congress, the CPI and the CPI(ML) about the remarks made by Modi on 21 April in Banswara.

It also asked Nadda to bring to the notice of all star campaigners of the party that they must 'set high standards of political discourse and observe [the] provisions of [the] Model Code of conduct in letter and spirit'.

Officials said it is the first time that the panel has taken cognisance of a complaint against any prime minister.

The Election Commission has, as the first step, invoked the provisions of the Representation of the People Act to hold party presidents responsible for reining in their star campaigners.

A similarly worded letter was sent to the Congress president with regard to allegations levelled by the BJP against him and Gandhi.

The letters from the EC to the two-party presidents did not directly name Modi, Gandhi or Kharge; but the complaints it received against the three leaders were attached as relevant.

In its complaint to the EC, the Congress had objected to Modi's speech alleging that the Congress wanted to redistribute the wealth of the people to Muslim citizens and that the Opposition party wouldn't even spare the mangalsutras of women.

The BJP, on the other hand, had complained that Gandhi had levelled malafide and utterly sinister allegations against Modi during a speech in Coimbatore, Tamil Nadu.

It also accused Kharge of violating the Model Code by claiming that he was not invited to the Ram Temple consecration ceremony due to discrimination against Schedules Castes and Tribes.

Edited from PTI article

Follow us on: Facebook, Twitter, Google News, Instagram 

Join our official telegram channel (@nationalherald) and stay updated with the latest headlines