The Madhya Pradesh High Court on Wednesday stayed proceedings against the controversial BJP spokesperson Sambit Patra in a poll code violation case. A report by PTI said that High Court judge Justice JP Gupta stayed further action against Patra, who had to face music from the Election Commission ahead of last year’s assembly polls in Madhya Pradesh.
Sambit Patra’s lawyer said that the High Court’s principal bench in Jabalpur stayed the entire proceedings before the CJM court in Bhopal.
According to the FIR filed by the Election Commission, Patra had violated the poll code by holding a press conference in front of a commercial building in MP Nagar area of Bhopal, where he slammed Congress President Rahul Gandhi on the National Herald case. The opposition Congress had wasted no time in approaching the poll body to claim that Patra’s presser was organised without requisite permissions and that too on public property (road).
The Election Commission, after an initial probe, had concluded that holding a press conference by blocking the road amounted to breach of code of conduct and ordered filing of an FIR against him. Sambit Patra had refused to turn up for hearing despite several summons issued against him.
He had later moved the High Court seeking a stay in action against him in the lower court.
Patra’s party, the BJP, had gone on to lose the elections in Madhya Pradesh with the Congress ending the saffron party’s 15 years of rule.