Saharanpur Congress candidate Imran Masood has stirred up a controversy by threatening to "chop Narendra Modi into pieces", inviting sharp criticism from the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), which termed the remark as "inflammatory" and sought strict action by the Election Commission.
An FIR has been registered against Masood for his controversial remarks threatening to "chop Narendra Modi into pieces" in violation of the Model Code of Conduct.
"The FIR has been registered against Masood at Deoband police station of Saharanpur," Inspector General of Police (Law and Order) Amrendra Sengar told reporters here.
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Sengar said the Congress nominee has been booked under section 125 (promoting enmity between classes in connection with election) of the Representation Of The People Act, and various IPC sections.
Besides, he has also been booked under provisions of the Scheduled Castes and the Scheduled Tribes (Prevention of Atrocities) Act, Sengar added.
A video, which has gone viral on the web, shows Masood attacking the BJP's prime ministerial candidate during an election rally in Saharanpur (Uttar Pradesh), saying he will "chop him into pieces".
"If Modi tries to make Uttar Pradesh into Gujarat, then we will chop him into tiny pieces...I am not scared of getting killed or attacking someone. I will fight against Modi. He thinks UP is Gujarat. Only 4% Muslims are there in Gujarat while there are 42% Muslims in UP," he said.
However, he later apologised for his remarks, saying, "I should have been more cautious with my words" and that the same were said in the heat of electioneering.
Saharanpur district magistrate as well as district election officer Sandhya Tiwari said a CD with the recordings of Masood's statement had been received by them which has been forwarded to the Election Commission.
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Masood has been booked under Sections 153 A (promoting enmity between different groups), 295 A (deliberate and malicious acts, intended to outrage religious feelings or any class by insulting its religion or religious beliefs), 504 (Intentional insult with intent to provoke breach of the peace), 506 (criminal intimidation) of the IPC, district authorities said.
The BJP condemned Masood's remarks and asked the Election Commission to take strict note of it, while ensuring the safety and security of all its leaders including Modi.
The BJP will make an official complaint with the EC on Saturday and a high-level delegation of the party would meet top poll officials in Delhi seeking strong action against Masood's remarks.
"BJP strongly condemns Imran Masood's statement and we are going to approach the Election Commission by lodging a formal complaint with it," BJP spokesperson Sudhanshu Trivedi told reporters here.
BJP vice-president Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi alleged that political secularism was being converted into "Talibani secularism" and the kind of language used by Congress leaders is vitiating the atmosphere of elections.
"The Election Commission should take immediate note of it and instruct the state and central governments regarding the serious threat to Modi and other BJP leaders," he said, adding that Congress leaders are indulging in such inflammatory speeches in view of the clear defeat facing them.
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