Rahul Gandhi’s interview to Gujarati channel: BJP wants EC to take cognizance, Cong says stop threatening journalists

"We have got a complaint regarding telecast of an interview. We have collected the DVDs. We will be doing due examination & look into whether it has violated Rules 126 RP Act or not," Election officer said.

By: Express Web Desk | New Delhi | Updated: December 13, 2017 8:50 pm
Rahul Gandhi's interview in Gujarat Rahul Gandhi during Gujarat Election. (Express photo: Javed Raja/file)

In the run-up to Gujarat elections, a war of words broke out between BJP and Congress over Rahul Gandhi’s interview to a local Gujarati channel. Arguing that the interview was a part of Congress’ election campaign, Railway Minister Piyush Goyal attacked Congress President-elect for allegedly violating the Representation of the People Act, 1951. “It was not permitted to give an interview in the last 48 hours of campaigning in Gujarat. I am sure the Election Commission will take cognizance of this and take an action,” he was quoted as saying by the ANI. The second phase of Gujarat polls will take place on December 14.

Congress in retaliation accused BJP of using “EC as a tool for its political gains.” Addressing a press conference, Congress spokesperson Randeep Surjewala accused BJP of allegedly threatening journalists. “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,” he said.

The Election Commission has ordered registration of FIR against violators. “After due deliberations, have directed the Chief Electoral Officer of Gujarat to initiate necessary action by filing FIR against violators,” said Election Commission. According to Representation of the People Act, 1951, section 126, public meetings are barred during the period of forty-eight hours before the elections.

Gandhi in an interview to Gujarat Samachar TV said, “This election is not about Rahul Gandhi or Narendra Modi. This is about the voice of Gujarat. They are not talking about real issues. There is no talk about Gujarat’s vikas. Instead, they insulted Manmohan Singh.”

He also continued his attack against PM Modi over GST, demonetisation and also accused the party of evading important questions related to the development of Gujarat. On his temple visits, he said, “Am I not allowed to visit temples? People from the BJP keep talking about this issue unnecessarily because they are scared and they don’t want to talk about real issues. PM Modi’s not afraid of Rahul Gandhi, he’s afraid of the people of Gujarat.” He also accused BJP of distorting his image. “There is no makeover in me. I am just speaking the truth and now people are able to see the reality.”

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  1. Ram
    Dec 13, 2017 at 8:46 pm
    Arey Badmash Congi - Why not Times Now not there and only your puppets were there.
    (0)(11)
    Reply
    1. I
      Indian Abroad
      Dec 13, 2017 at 8:38 pm
      Rahul was totally lifeless during the interview anyways. It actually bene ed BJP.
      (1)(1)
      Reply
      1. Girish Ramaiah
        Dec 13, 2017 at 8:15 pm
        Today's speech by Modi in FICCI can also be considered as an Election Speech.
        (9)(4)
        Reply
        1. Corejj Interco
          Dec 13, 2017 at 7:44 pm
          If the news channel had published it it’s their Fault if they did it in 48 hours of polling because the interviewee would not know when that would be telecast
          (8)(0)
          Reply
          1. Sanjay Bhattacharya
            Dec 13, 2017 at 7:13 pm
            Clearly Rahul Gandhi has violated election code. But EC is powerless. They cannot do anything except sending a strong letter. So, carry on Congress with your violations. In any case Congress is not going to win this election by any means.
            (8)(22)
            Reply
            1. ሆልይ ትርንትይ
              Dec 13, 2017 at 7:19 pm
              EC is powerless!!! --- WHY?
              (10)(1)
              Reply
              1. B
                Bharat Maa
                Dec 13, 2017 at 7:34 pm
                because it is in pocket of Bharatiya Jumla Party.
                (24)(5)
              2. B
                Bharat Maa
                Dec 13, 2017 at 7:34 pm
                bhakt you forgot in 2014 Feku outside poll booth showed BJP logo to media. see objectively before you cry and bark.
                (22)(4)
                Reply
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