Congress to seek ban on Mann ki baat ahead of Bihar polls

  • HT Correspondent, Hindustan Times, New Delhi
  • Updated: Sep 17, 2015 14:41 IST

The Congress will approach the Election Commission on Wednesday to seek a ban on Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s popular monthly radio programme “Mann Ki Baat” in the run-up to the polls to the Bihar assembly.

The reason: The Congress, a partner in the Janata Dal-United-Rashtriya Janata Dal alliance in Bihar, feels Modi may unduly influence voters through his programme.

The Election Commission, sources said, is unlikely to issue any order banning the show as a similar request was turned down during elections to the Delhi and Maharashtra assemblies earlier this year.

The poll panel had turned down these appeals on the ground that the radio show is not on state-specific issues and the Prime Minister addresses a wider pan-Indian audience.

Sources in the Congress told Hindustan Times that some senior party functionaries deliberated the issue of seeking a ban on the Prime Minister’s programme before deciding to appeal to the Election Commission.

On Tuesday, the Prime Minister had asked people to post questions for the next episode of Mann Ki Baat.

Government sources said the Prime Minister, who is spearheading the Bharatiya Janata Party’s campaign for the crucial Bihar polls, is unlikely to talk about the elections on the next episode of Mann Ki Baat.

Voting for the five-phased Bihar polls will start on October 12 and the results will be out on November 8.

The BJP is locked in a keen contest in the state against the JD-U-RJD alliance.

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