EC Declines to Comment on PM's Poll Speech

The Asian Age With Agency Inputs

India, Politics

The Congress has filed 17 complaints with the ECI against the BJP and Modi’s comments

Prime Minister Narendra Modi during a public meeting for Lok Sabha elections, in Aligarh, Monday, April 22, 2024. (PTI Photo)

New Delhi: A Congress delegation on Monday filed a complaint with the Election Commission of India (ECI) against Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s contentious speech at Rajasthan on Sunday. The Prime Minister remarked that if the Congress came to power, it would redistribute the wealth of people to Muslims. The Congress said the EC is on trial in this case and it expects equal treatment for all violators.

The ECI, however, declined to comment on remarks made by the Prime Minister. “We decline comment,” a poll panel spokesperson said.

The Congress has filed 17 complaints with the ECI against the BJP and Modi’s comments. A delegation of the party including Dr Abhishek Manu Singhvi and Gurdeep Singh Sappal, who met the ECI, said few elements in the Prime Minister’s speech were “deeply, deeply objectionable”.

“He (the PM) had named a community. He has talked of religion blatantly; he has talked of communal and community blatantly”, Singhvi pointed out, while adding that the Prime Minister has linked it with deprivation of resources for the majority and garnering a monopolisation of resources by that minority.

Singhvi said Modi also brought up the Hindu imagery of no less than the ‘mangalsutra’ in clear violation of the Section 123, the basic principle of not allowing incitement and inflammation of communal passions.

“We respect the office he holds. He is as much our Prime Minister as he is yours and of the BJP. The higher the post he holds, the more the obligation on him to exercise restraint”, Dr Singhvi observed while praying to him with “folded hands to withdraw these comments”.

He added the ECI has issued several circulars with regard to political leaders and candidates with regard to their utterances during campaigns and all have been asked to maintain decorum and not to use religion in campaigns. “This is a very serious uncalled for invasion and we hope and trust because the Election Commission itself is on trial irrespective of the status of the person who has done this appropriate action as in other cases will and must follow shortly,” he said.

Meanwhile, the BJP said that Prime Minister Narendra Modi has called a spade a spade and has echoed people’s sentiments. BJP spokesperson Gaurav Bhatia told reporters that the Opposition is in pain as Modi has shown them the mirror. His remarks have resonated with people, as for the I.N.D.I.A. bloc those who have illegally entered the country are far more important if they happen to be Muslims than the citizens of the country, he alleged.

“When you call a spade a spade, the I.N.D.I.A bloc starts feeling the pain. They are so ashamed of their own legacy and the past that they don’t wish that any leader from the BJP or the NDA shows them the mirror and talks about their past,” he said.