EC issues notices to Priyanka, Kejriwal for remarks on PM Modi | Latest News India - Hindustan Times
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EC issues notices to Priyanka, Kejriwal for remarks on PM Modi

By, New Delhi
Nov 15, 2023 03:14 AM IST

In its notice to Kejriwal, Narendra N. Butolia, senior principal secretary at EC, sought an explanation over two posts against the PM Modi on X made by AAP.

The Election Commission of India (ECI) on Tuesday issued show-cause notices to Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) national convener Arvind Kejriwal and Congress leader Priyanka Gandhi for allegedly making false statements against Prime Minister Narendra Modi while campaigning for the assembly elections in five states.

Congress leader Priyanka Gandhi Vadra addresses a public meeting in poll-bound Chhattisgarh’s Bilaspur on Monday. (PTI)
Congress leader Priyanka Gandhi Vadra addresses a public meeting in poll-bound Chhattisgarh’s Bilaspur on Monday. (PTI)

On the basis of separate complaints by the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), the poll panel sought a response from the two leaders on why action should not be initiated against them by November 16.

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There was no immediate reaction from the two parties.

In its notice to Kejriwal, Narendra N. Butolia, senior principal secretary at EC, sought an explanation over two posts against the Prime Minister on X, formerly Twitter, made from the AAP’s official account.

This came after the BJP, on November 10, approached the poll panel over a video – posted from AAP’s X account on November 8 – featuring Modi and industrialist Gautam Adani. The next day, the party posted a picture of Adani and Modi, and alleged that the Prime Minister works for the industrialist and not the people.

In its complaint against AAP, the BJP also cited Section 66A of the Information Technology Act which criminalises sending offensive messages through communication service. However, Section 66A was struck down by the Supreme Court in the Shreya Singhal judgment in 2015 and thus, cannot be used.

In its notice, the EC said: “The national convener of the Aam Aadmi Party is hereby called upon to explain the statements/allegations/averments, made in the alleged social media posts under reference, against a star campaigner of another national party and against the political party… and to show cause why appropriate action for violation of model code of conduct… should not be taken against you.”

The poll panel’s notice to Vadra was also issued on a BJP complaint that the Congress leader made “unverified and false statements” about Modi during a rally in Sanwer, Madhya Pradesh. She had purportedly alleged that Modi had given away PSU BHEL to his industrialist friends.

“You must have verified the facts as stated in para 5 above so as to not leave any possibility of misleading the voters,” the notice, issued by EC secretary Amit Kumar, said.

This is the second such notice to Vadra in less than a month. Earlier, she was issued a notice for her statement that Modi donated only 21 at a temple.

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