The Election Commission of India has served a notice to Congress President-elect, Rahul Gandhi, for giving TV interviews after the campaigning ended for the second phase of Gujarat elections.
The EC asked Rahul to reply by 5 PM on 18 December over his interview to TV channels. The poll body also asked him to ‘explain why action should not be taken against you for violating provisions of Model Code of Conduct, failing which Commission will decide matter without any further reference to you.”
B Swain, Chief Electoral Officer, Gujarat, said, “We have been directed by the EC to take actions by filing FIR against violation of 126 (1) (b) of Representation of People Act 1951 in the areas going to polls tomorrow and we are working on it.”
Rahul had given interviews to several TV channels including ABP News after the campaigning ended for the second phase.
The EC also asked action to be taken against the TV channels, which aired Rahul’s interview.
Congress party is also likely to approach Election Commission shortly over its order to file FIR against channels airing Rahul Gandhi’s interview. It asked why the EC had not acted against Prime Minister Narendra Modi, who had violated code on many occasions including by invoking religious issues and campaigning after the campaign deadline.
Congress party’s chief spokesperson, Randeep Surjewala said, “When Congress President-elect Rahul Gandhi gave interviews to a few Gujarati news channels, BJP, in the name of Election Commission, threatened to jail the journalists of those channels for broadcasting it. We condemn this arrogant behavior of BJP.”
Anand Sharma of Congress said, “PM Modi, BJP President Amit Shah, FM Arun Jaitley & RM Piyush Goyal have violated Model Code of Conduct again & again. PM misused the FICCI platform to attack Cong, EC should stay unbiased.”
More to follow