A view of the Election Commission of India building, Nirvachan Sadan, in New Delhi, on January 29, 2020.(Arvind Yadav/HT Photo)
A view of the Election Commission of India building, Nirvachan Sadan, in New Delhi, on January 29, 2020.(Arvind Yadav/HT Photo)

Election Commission issues notice to BJP leader over advertisement against Congress

The Congress had objected to a BJP advertisement that appeared on Tuesday on the front page of a newspaper.
Hindustan Times, New Delhi | By Bhadra Sinha
UPDATED ON JAN 30, 2020 11:17 AM IST

The Election Commission of India (ECI) on Wednesday issued a showcause notice to Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) national general secretary Arun Singh for allegedly making unverified allegations against rival candidates and parties in fray for the forthcoming Delhi Assembly elections.

The notice said that ECI finds BJP has prima facie violated the model code of conduct and gave time till Friday noon to the party general secretary to submit a written response.

The ECI action came on a complaint filed by Congress accusing BJP of issuing advertisements in the print media making “false, unsubstantiated and baseless” allegations against the former.

The Congress had objected to a BJP advertisement that appeared on Tuesday on the front page of a newspaper titled “15 saal Congress ki loot”.

“The commission is prima facie of the view that by the said advertisement, the Bhartiya Janata Party has violated... provision of the model code of conduct,” read the notice put up on the ECI website late on Wednesday night.

The notice to BJP came close to ECI’s directive asking the party to immediately drop two of its star campaigners - Union Minister Anurag Thakur and parliamentarian Parvesh Verma - as it took cognizant of the divisive and, as alleged by rivals, communally charged rhetoric used during election campaign. The two were also issued showcase notices to which they have to respond by today afternoon.

“Commission, considering the gravity of the case, hereby directs that the advertisement in question shall not be repeated till such a time a decision is taken,” said the notice, cautioning BJP from issuing similar advertisements until ECI acts on the complaint.

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