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HindustanTimes Thu,21 Aug 2014

Cong moves EC against Badal for 'invoking' martyrs for votes

PTI  Chandigarh, March 24, 2014
First Published: 18:20 IST(24/3/2014) | Last Updated: 18:22 IST(24/3/2014)

The Congress on Monday moved Election Commission seeking action against Punjab chief minister Parkash Singh Badal and others alleging that they violated model code of conduct for Lok Sabha elections by seeking votes in the names of martyrs.

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In its complaint, Punjab Congress has alleged that Badal and SAD candidate for Anandpur Sahib Lok Sabha seat Prem Singh Chandumajra at a function at Khatkar Kalan in Nawanshahr yesterday sought votes for Narendra Modi and SAD-BJP candidates by invoking freedom fighters, party's election cell spokesman said.

"The act of Badal is blatant violation of model code of conduct by seeking votes for SAD-BJP nominees in the name of martyrs at Khatkar Kalan in Nawanshahr on Sunday," he claimed.

March 23, the death anniversary of freedom fighters Bhagat Singh, Rajguru and Sukhdev, is observed as Martyrs Day.

While addressing the gathering, Badal not only made a political speech but also asked people to vote for SAD-BJP candidates to form NDA government headed by Narendra Modi at the Centre, the Congress complaint stated.

"Invoking martyrs and seeking votes in their name at martyrdom function by Badal is a blatant violation of the model code of conduct," it stated.

Chandumajra is equally guilty of the violation as he was also present at the function and Badal being the leader of the SAD-BJP ruling alliance made a political speech with his consent and connivance, Congress alleged.

"Badal's political speech was telecast by different TV channels and therefore the speech was not only meant for the gathering at Khatkar Kalan village, but he targeted all the voters in Punjab where TV is widely viewed," Congress said.

Not only Badal, but all SAD-BJP candidates in the state, including Arun Jaitley from Amritsar Lok Sabha seat are guilty of violation of the model code of conduct, Congress claimed.

In the name of martyrs, Badal exhorted the voters to bring NDA to power at the Centre and specifically named Modi at the function and so Modi was also guilty, Congress alleged.

Punjab will go to polls on April 30.

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