The Election Commission of India has ordered to defer the shoot of the Gujarat tourism ad film by megastar Amitabh Bachchan until the poll-process is over in the state.
K Ajay Kumar, Principal Secretary to the Commission in a letter to Anita Karwal, the Chief Electoral Officer of Gujarat, informed that the ECI has directed that the proposed shooting of the film ‘Khushboo Gujarat Ki’ for two days on March 11 and 12 be deferred in the entire state until the completion of the election process.
“Please inform all concerned,” the letter said.
The communication was in response to a letter by Karwal in reference to the matter after Narendra Ravat, president of the city unit of the Congress and now party candidate against Narendra Modi nominee from Vadodara parliamentary seat, raised strong objections over shooting of this ad film.
He alleged that it was violation of Model Code of Conduct in force.
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Ravat had written to both to Karwal and the Chief Election Commissioner V S Sampath in this regard.
However, Bachchan had already conveyed a message on morning of the March 11 informing his inability to come for the shoot at Champaner-Pavagadh.
Bachchan was to fly to Vadodara on morning of March 11 and reach Pavagadh for the two-day shoot but cancelled his programme on health grounds.
Following the orders, all arrangements made at the Champaner-Pavagadh site had to be wound up.
Former Union Minister of State for Railway and Congress party nominee from Chhota Udepur LS constituency, Naran Rathwa had also took objection to the ad shoot as the site is part of the reserved seat.
Both Ravat and Rathwa had alleged that Narendra Modi-led Gujarat government was trying to take advantage of the Bollywood actor’s celebrity status to influence voters in their areas.