The Election Commission's decision selecting former India cricket captain Sourav Ganguly for an audio-visusal promo for West Bengal assembly elections has run into trouble with Trinamool Congress complaining that he was politically affiliated to ruling CPI(M).
"We had taken a verbal assurance from Sourav Ganguly that he won't campaign for any political party before selecting him as an icon of the commission," Additional Chief Electoral Officer N K Sahana said today.
Ganguly and percussionist Bikram Ghosh were selected by the Election Commission which produced the audio-visual for telecast on major channels to create interest among the people to vote. The controversy arose when Urban Development Minister Ashok Bhattacharya, belonging to CPI(M), claimed Ganguly would campaign for him in the elections.
"Trinamool Congress gave a CD where the Minister's and Ganguly's versions are recorded," Sahana said. "We have gone through it and the decision regarding the issue will be taken tomorrow," he said.
"If he agrees to campaign for any political party, then we will have to withdraw the promo. We cannot stop him from expressing his political opinion publicly," Sahana said when asked whether Ganguly could campaign for a political party.
Trinamool Congress said in its complaint that it would be against election ethics for Ganguly to be the icon of the EC when he was politically affiliated to CPI(M). The former Indian captain was not available for comments.