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Election Commission issues notice to Rahul Gandhi for his riot remark

Rahul Gandhi has been asked to respond to the notice by November 4.

Written by Express News Service | New Delhi | Published: November 1, 2013 2:45:42 am

Three days after the BJP lodged a formal complaint with the Election Commission accusing Congress vice-president Rahul Gandhi of having violated the model code of conduct and demanding the withdrawal of recognition of the Indian National Congress as a ‘national party’,the EC on Thursday issued a notice to Rahul.

Rahul has been asked to respond to the notice by November 4.

In its complaint,the BJP alleged that Rahul had falsely blamed the opposition party for the Communal violence in Muzaffarnagar.

Referring to Rahul’s speeches at rallies in Churu and Kherli in Rajasthan on October 23,the BJP alleged that he “made certain false and baseless allegations against the members of the BJP and made communal utterances,thereby inciting communal feelings of people of different communities”.

The complaint also included Rahul’s allegation made during a rally in Indore on October 24 that Pakistani agencies were trying to reach out to young Muslims whose families had been affected by the Muzaffarnagar riots.

The Commission,after examining Rahul’s speeches and taking into account the electoral officer’s report,has asked him to explain why action should not be initiated against him for prima facie violating the model code of conduct. “The Commission is prima facie of the view that your aforesaid speeches are violative of above-referred sub paras (1),(2) and (3) of Para 1 of the model code of conduct for political parties and candidates. The Election Commission of India calls upon you to explain by 11.30 hours on November 4,2013 as to why action should not be taken against you for the above-mentioned violations of the model code of conduct,” said the EC notice.

The EC said that in case no reply is received within the prescribed time limit,it will be presumed that Rahul has nothing to say and the Commission will proceed to take appropriate action without any further reference.

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