EC censures Kejriwal; AAP leader to approach court
New Delhi, Jan 21 (IANS) The Election Commission of India (ECI) has censured Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal for violating the Model Code of Conduct, warning him of stern action in case of similar violations in future.
The Aam Aadmi Party leader said he will approach a court of law on what he termed as a “wrong” order.
“The Election Commission hereby, censures you (Kejriwal) for violating the provisions of the MCC and expects you shall be more circumspect in your public utterances during election time,” said an EC order to Kejriwal.
The order was issued on Friday but became public only on Saturday.
Kejriwal tweeted: “The EC order against me (is) completely wrong. Lower court gave order in my favour. EC ignored court’s order. (I) Will challenge EC’s latest order in court.”
The EC order reads: “You (Kejriwal) may also note that in case of similar violation of MCC in future the commission will take stern action against you and your party, using all powers available to it, including action under Para 16 A of the Election Symbols (Reservation and Allotment) Order of 1968.”
Kejriwal is said to have violated the Model Code by “deliberately and intentionally” instigating the public to take bribes for voting in Goa assembly elections on February 4.
Speaking at four rallies in Goa on January 8, Kejriwal said people should not just accept Rs 5,000, but demand Rs 10,000 from politicians keen on offering them money, but vote for the AAP.
“If the Congress or the BJP people offer money, don’t say no. It is our own money; at least you are getting some of it back… but when it comes to pressing the EVM (electronic voting machine) button, vote for AAP,” Kejriwal allegedly said at a rally.
Following Bharatiya Janata Party’s complaint, the EC issued a notice to Kejriwal on January 16 and sought a reply by January 19.
Though Kejriwal replied through his attorney Kailash Gahlot, the EC said it is not satisfied with the reply, saying it was not at all convincing.
As per the Model Code of Conduct, political parties and candidates need to scrupulously avoid all activities that are corrupt practices and offences under the election laws.