Saturday, 11 October 2014

EC dismisses Congress complaint on Modi's AIR address

NEW DELHI: The Election Commission on Friday rejected Congress' charge that Prime Minister Narendra Modi had "misused the state machinery" to broadcast his "Mann ki Baat" address on All India Radio, and held there was nothing in the speech that violated the model code of conduct in poll-bound Haryana and Maharashtra.

"The audio of the speech under reference and its script have been heard and perused in the Commission ... the Commission did not find anything in the broadcast matter which constituted violation of model code of conduct," principal secretary to EC K Ajaya Kumar wrote to the Congress in response to its complaint filed on October 6.

Modi, through his "Mann ki Baat" address broadcast on All India Radio on October 3, had sought to reach out to countrymen and encouraged them to shed despondency and put their skills to use for prosperity and betterment of the country.

"The 125 crore Indians are blessed with immense skill and strength. All we need to do is to understand our strengths," he had told the countrymen in the audio message.

Modi's address, which coincided with Dussehra, was dubbed by Congress as "misuse of state machinery" and official media even as the model code of conduct is in force in Haryana and Maharashtra.

AICC legal department secretary K C Mittal, in a letter to chief election commissioner V S Sampath, complained that the broadcast was against the instructions issued by EC on use of state media by political parties during polls.

Stating that Modi was the "prime campaigner and face" of the BJP for the upcoming polls, Mittal alleged that the broadcast was "part of the election campaign specially planned and designed for furtherance of the interest of the party (BJP) in power" by "misuse" of government machinery and personnel. He sought "immediate stern action" against Modi and the BJP.

Assembly polls in Haryana and Maharashtra are due on October 15.'s AIR address,Congress,Election Commission

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