Vadodara Congress candidate Madhusudan Mistry on Sunday submitted his reply to the notice of District Election Officer Vinod Rao, stating that he didn’t make any comment on one person, but on the BJP.
On Friday, the election officer had slapped a notice on Mistry demanding explanation from him for the “use of vulgar and insulting comments” against a senior woman politician from another political party.
Mistry submitted his reply within the deadline, explaining his stand to challenge the authorities contemplating legal action against him. In his notice, he stated that his comment must be heard in the context of the conversation and in entirety as he did not make any comment on Sushma Swaraj, but on the BJP.
In his reply to the DEO, (The Indian Express has access to the reply) Mistry said that although his comments were in response to a question posed by a mediapersons on Swaraj’s statement that “good days are approaching”, the misinterpretation of his comment has been done by the BJP leaders themselves, who have claimed a part of his comment for Swaraj in her personal capacity.
Mistry said that when a journalist posed the question, his first reaction was, “It is too early (to say that)” and he further stated, “first a medical examination is needed to confirm if good days are indeed coming, that is, ask the people first, let them cast their mandate and if the BJP clears the test of the people then say that good days are coming.”
Mistry said that his entire statement in Gujarati, which the DEO has examined through the 28 seconds long video clip, is “self explanatory that the comment is intended for the party”. Mistry, in his response, also said that the dictionary meaning of many “Gujarati words can be interpreted as good and vulgar, depending on the person.”
Mistry also challenged the DEO’s warning that a case may be contemplated against him under IPC sections for “outraging a woman’s modesty” by citing the provisions of the law that the prosecution under IPC does not stand in good law.
In his reply, Mistry said, “According to the provisions of the Indian Penal Code, only the aggrieved person himself or herself can be a complainant and not a third party. Sushma Swaraj has not filed any complaint against us in this case.”
When contacted, Rao said, “I have received the reply and I am examining the response before arriving at any decision.”