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EC issues notice against Rahul Gandhi for code of conduct violation

LiveMint logoLiveMint 09-05-2014 Anuja

New Delhi: The Election Commission (EC) on Friday issued a notice against Congress vice-president Rahul Gandhi for violation of the model code of conduct (MCC) at an election rally on 1 May at Solan in Himachal Pradesh.

The EC was acting upon a complaint filed by the main opposition Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) against Gandhi, who is a contestant from Amethi constituency in Uttar Pradesh.

The EC has taken cognizance of the following comments made by Gandhi in his election speech: “People from Japan ask questions, do you know what they ask. We are scared of one thing. We will help you, we will help you build roads. But one fear is whether there will be peace here or not. Will the people of Hindustan (India) fight one another. This is clearly a fear in our lives. BJP will be there, if BJP will be there, there would be fights, if BJP comes to power 22,000 people will die. This is because they spread anger...”

Citing three different violations of the MCC, the Commission said: “...the Commission is prima facie of the opinion that by making the aforesaid statement you have violated the above said provisions of the Model Code of Conduct.”

The three violations cited by EC were: indulging in activity that aggravates existing differences or creates mutual hatred; not limiting criticism of other parties to their policies and past records; and appealing to caste or communal feelings.

The Commission has given Gandhi time till 11am on 12 May to explain his stand, in the absence of which the EC would “take a decision without further reference” to the Congress leader.

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