SC to examine Election Commission’s powers against candidates making ‘hate speeches’https://indianexpress.com/elections/sc-to-examine-ecs-powers-against-candidates-for-hate-speeches-5676154/

SC to examine Election Commission’s powers against candidates making ‘hate speeches’

The bench, headed by Chief Justice of India Ranjan Gogoi, was hearing a PIL seeking action against political parties for "hate speeches" made by their leaders or representatives.

SC to examine Election Commission's action on hate speeches
Supreme Court of India (File Photo)

The Supreme Court said Monday it would examine the scope of the Election Commission’s powers against candidates for making speeches along religious and caste lines. The bench, headed by Chief Justice of India Ranjan Gogoi, was hearing a PIL filed by an NRI in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) seeking action against political parties for “hate speeches” made by their leaders or representatives.

Taking note of statements made by Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath and BSP chief Mayawati during their Lok Sabha election campaigns, the bench expressed concern over the EC’s inaction. “Tell us what action you have taken against Mayawati and Yogi Adityanath,” the bench asked according to news agency PTI, and directed officials from the Election Commission to appear before it on Tuesday.

On Monday, the Election Commission told the court that its powers against candidates were limited, and it could only issue notice, give an advisory or file a complaint for violation of the Model Code of Conduct, reported Bar and Bench.

Officials reportedly told the court that they had no powers beyond that and the commission couldn’t disqualify candidates.

The matter will be heard on Tuesday.

(With inputs from PTI)

Follow the Lok Sabha Elections 2019 real-time on IndianExpress.com/elections. Check the Lok Sabha election schedule, your Lok Sabha constituency details as well as where Narendra Modi and Rahul Gandhi are campaigning in the Lok Sabha Election. On Twitter, follow @Decision2019 for the latest news and analysis.