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HindustanTimes Fri,19 Sep 2014

Modi gets clean chit in poll code violation case

PTI   Ahmedabad, August 08, 2014
First Published: 19:43 IST(8/8/2014) | Last Updated: 20:52 IST(8/8/2014)

Giving a clean chit to Prime Minister Narendra Modi, the Gujarat police on Friday filed a closure report in a metropolitan court in Ahmedabad in a case of alleged violation of model code of conduct during the Lok Sabha election.

"We have filed a closure summary report before the metropolitan court number 11 here today," a senior officer of the Detection of Crime Branch (DCB) said.

The closure summary maintaining that no case was made out against Modi was filed in the court of Metropolitan Magistrate MH Patel.

To a question whether Modi has been given a clean chit in the case that was filed on the instructions of the Election Commission, he replied in the affirmative.

An FIR was registered against Modi, who was then the Gujarat chief minister, following a directive from the poll panel for allegedly violating provisions of the Representation of People Act on April 30 this year.

Modi had triggered a controversy when he addressed a press conference immediately after casting his vote at a school in Ranip area of Ahmedabad, part of party veteran LK Advani's Gandhinagar seat, where he prominently displayed the BJP's election symbol lotus.

Accusing him of violating the election law, the Congress party had filed a complaint with the EC.

The poll panel's order directing lodging of a complaint/FIR said Modi had violated the provisions of Sections 126 (1)(a) and 126 (l)(b) of Representation of People Act, 1951. The maximum punishment under these provisions of RPA is up to two years imprisonment.

The EC order had said, "The commission is of the view that by holding that meeting and also by addressing the same today when the polling is going on in the entire state of Gujarat and in different parts of the country, Narendra Modi has violated the provisions of Sections 126 (1)(a) and 126 (l)(b) of RP Act 1951.

"Therefore, the commission directs ... that complaint/FIR as the case may be, should be filed against Narendra Modi and all others who were involved in the convening and holding of the said meeting," the EC order had said.

Section 126 (1) (a) of RP Act prohibits holding of public meetings during period of 48 hours ending with the hour fixed for conclusion of poll.
 
Modi is also facing a separate case in connection with the incident wherein an Aam Aadmi Party worker has said that the police had filed an incomplete FIR in the case.

Nishant Verma, in his complaint to the Ahmedabad (rural) court, has demanded that Modi be additionally charged under sections section 130 of RPA and IPC sections 114, 171 (c) and (f).


At the last hearing in the case on August 5, additional chief judicial magistrate (ACJM) MM Sheikh of Ahmedabad rural court had given the crime branch three weeks to file an action taken report.

According to section 130 of the RP Act, a person is prohibited from canvassing for votes or exhibit any notice or signs relating to the election within the polling station on the day of polls, while IPC section 114 stands for the role of an abettor present when an offence is committed.

Section 171(c) says whoever voluntarily interferes or attempts to interfere with the free exercise of any electoral right commits the offence of undue influence at an election, while relates to punishment for undue influence or personation at an election.

Violation of 171(f) is punishable with imprisonment of either description for a term which may extend to one year or with fine, or with both.


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