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Gujarat elections: Chief electoral Officer orders probe against controversial video

The clip shows a girl hurrying back to home through a deserted locality with azaan playing in the background. The clip ends with a line that reads, “Our vote, our safety.”

assembly elections Updated: Nov 18, 2017 22:34 IST
IANS, Gandhinagar
Gujarat elections,Communal video,Election Commission
BJP supporters during Gujarat Gaurav Maha Sammelan in Gandhinagar on October 16, 2017. (AP Photo)

The Chief Electoral Officer (CEO) of Gujarat has ordered the cyber crime cell of Ahmedabad to probe a complaint filed by a rights activist about a video that’s viral on social media, alleging it was made with an intention to cause communal divide in the context of the Gujarat Assembly elections.

The Gujarat CEO BB Swain ordered the cyber crime cell Ahmedabad to investigate the complaint of Govindbhai Parmar, a human rights activist and lawyer, who has objected to the video saying it was made with the intention of spreading communal hatred between Muslims and Hindus and demanded that it be banned.

“Yes, it’s true that a complaint has been filed with the ECI regarding this and I have ordered an inquiry into the matter by the Cyber Crime Cell of Ahmedabad,” Swain told IANS.

The Human Rights Law Network through Govindbhai Parmar has also sought action against those who made the video, saying it can hurt the sentiments of the minority community.

The 1.15 minute-long video in Gujarati, widely circulated on social media, shows people of the majority community being terrified of Muslims. The video propagates that women are safe under BJP reign. “I had filed a complaint with the ECI as well as the crime cell. From both the places I have got the response that they have initiated action. The cyber crime cell has stated that adequate procedure will be carried out against the makers of the video,” Parmar told IANS.

The video starts with the text: “Gujarat maa saanjh 7 pachi aavu thai shake chhe (After 7 pm this thing can happen in Gujarat).” Next you see a young woman in a terrified state walk through deserted streets as the sound of azaan (The call to prayers from a mosque) can be heard in the background. When she finally enters her house, her worried parents jump in relief and embrace her. Her mother looks at the camera and says, “Surprised that this is Gujarat?” The father adds: “This was Gujarat 22 years ago. And this can happen again if they return.”

“But don’t worry, no one will come because here it’s Modi” says the daughter.

The video concludes with Gujarati words in saffron colour: ‘Aapno Vote, Aapni Suraksha (your vote, your security).’

First Published: Nov 18, 2017 20:20 IST