In perhaps an unprecedented move, the Election Commission on Wednesday issued an ‘advisory’ to Puducherry lieutenant governor Kiran Bedi following complaints of model code violation and asked her to be “more circumspect” in future to avoid any scope for complaint.
T Murugan, executive member of Communist Party of India (Marxist), had moved the Commission alleging model code violation by the L-G, including one relating to “calling Chief Electoral Officer Puducherry and district collector with field staff” when the process to hold bypoll to the Nellithope assembly constituency was on. The bypoll was held on November 19.
The EC advisory said the poll body went through the point-wise replies given by her but “... the reply was not found very satisfactory.”
The Commission reminded Bedi that “all authorities, who are in higher constitutional positions, are expected to ensure the sanctity of electoral process, not to engage in any activity or appear to engage in any such activities which disturbs or appears to disturb the level playing field of conduct of election or creates doubts in the minds of stakeholders about integrity of the electoral process and also follow the model code of conduct in letter and spirit.”
The Commission said in some of the alleged matters, “it was found to be wanting” and it “expects that in future, you would be more circumspect so as not to leave any scope for complaint by anyone”.