The Election Commission (EC) has censured Assam health minister Himanta Biswa Sarma for violating the provisions of the model code of conduct while filing his nominations. Another Congress candidate, Jamal Uddin, has also been reprimanded for holding an election meeting in an educational institute without prior permission.
Sarma, the Congress candidate for the Jalukbari assembly constituency, was issued a show cause notice by the district election officer of Kamrup Metropolitan district on March 25. In his reply, Sarma denied the allegation and claimed the ‘crowd of supporters had joined him on their own” and that “they went out of my control” when he went to file his nomination paper.
The EC did not find Sarma’s reply satisfactory, maintaining that gathering of 4,000-5,000 party workers “could not have been accumulated spontaneously”. Supporting audio-visual evidence also went against him, it noted and censured him for violating the provisions of the model code of conduct.
On the other hand, Jamal Uddin, the Congress candidate for the Badarpur seat denied allegation that party workers had arranged a meeting in the premises of a school. The EC, dissatisfied with his reply, censured him too.