Home Minister Amit Shah’s “taught a lesson in 2002” remark during the recent Gujarat Assembly elections didn’t violate the model code of conduct (MCC), election commission sources said.
Shah said the BJP taught a lesson to rioters in 2002 during a rally on November 25. The EC was contacted by retired bureaucrat E A S Sarma, who accused Shah of breaking the model code of conduct.
There was an investigation and a report requested from the Gujarat Chief Electoral Officer. Home Minister was talking about teaching “miscreants” a lesson, not any particular community, EC found.
He said he hadn’t received a response to his complaint or two subsequent letters to the EC on Friday. As a public authority under the Right to Information Act, the EC should make its decision public through its website.
Another EC source says the Gujarat and Himachal Pradesh Assembly elections, which ended on Thursday, saw over 6,000 and 1,000 cases of MCC violations reported through the CVigil app. In Himachal, 800 cases were found to be correct, and in Gujarat, 5,100. Around 3,600 cases were related to displaying posters and banners without permission in Gujarat, while 580 were related to Himachal. There were also 185 cases of money distribution reported through the app in hill state.
Authorities in the two states increased the seizure of freebies that were meant to get people to vote. Cash, liquor, drugs, precious metals and other freebies were seized in Gujarat worth Rs 801.85 crore, up from Rs 27.21 crore in the 2017 elections.
In 2017, Himachal Pradesh seized Rs 9.03 crore, but this year there was 57.24 crore.
In November and December, 59,723 polling stations held elections in Gujarat, Himachal, and five by-elections. According to the source, there was no demand for re-polling.