Lok Sabha polls: BJP moves SC against Calcutta HC order against publishing ads | Latest News India - Hindustan Times
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Lok Sabha polls: BJP moves SC against Calcutta HC order against publishing ads

May 24, 2024 04:59 PM IST

The Calcutta HC has directed the party not to publish any advertisement violating the Model Code of Conduct during the Lok Sabha election.

The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) on Friday moved the Supreme Court against a Calcutta High Court order that refused to interfere with a single-judge verdict directing the party not to publish any advertisement violating the Model Code of Conduct during the Lok Sabha election, reported PTI.

The Supreme Court building in New Delhi.(File)
The Supreme Court building in New Delhi.(File)

The matter was mentioned for urgent listing before a vacation bench of Justice Bela M Trivedi and Justice Pankaj Mithal. Follow full coverage of the Lok Sabha elections here.

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Advocate Saurabh Mishra, who mentioned the matter, told the bench that a division bench of the high court passed the order on May 22.

"Why don't you move the next vacation bench?" the bench asked.

The counsel told the bench that the high court has restrained the BJP from issuing advertisements during the Lok Sabha polls till June 4. 

"Kindly have it on Monday (May 27)," the lawyer requested the bench, according to PTI. "We will see," the bench said in response.

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Earlier this month, the BJP had published at least four advertisements in vernacular dailies, portraying the ruling party Trinamool Congress as corrupt and one that is against the Hindus, and claiming that women are not safe under the present regime. The TMC filed multiple complaints with the EC and later moved the high court after alleged inaction by the poll body.

The MCC prohibits political parties, leaders, and candidates from criticising their opponents based on unverified allegations.

Calcutta HC judgment

The Calcutta high court on Monday pulled up the Election Commission (EC) for its “gross failure” to address complaints about “derogatory” advertisements published by the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) against the Trinamool Congress (TMC) in West Bengal, and restrained the opposition party from carrying out materials that are in violation of the Model Code of Conduct (MCC).

A single bench of Justice Sabyasachi Bhattacharyya passed the order while hearing a petition by the TMC, seeking to restrain the BJP from publishing advertisements that violate the poll code.

“In the present case, the EC has grossly failed to address the complaints raised by the petitioner in due time. This court is surprised that no resolution worth the name has been arrived at regarding the complaints till date, more so because most of the phases of the elections are over,” the judge said.

On May 22, a division bench of the High Court refused to interfere with the single-judge order in the matter.

Observing that a "laxman rekha" should be adhered to, the division bench had said there should not be any personal attack on the part of any political party.

(Inputs from PTI)

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