Bengal Polls: Election Commission sends notice to Suvendu Adhikari over ‘hate speech’


The Election Commission of India sent a notice of BJP leader Suvendu Adhikari for alleged ‘hate speech’ delivered by him while campaigning in Nandigram

The notice has been served on a complaint lodged by a Communist Party of India (Marxist-Leninist) (CPI-ML) Politburo member Kavita Krishnan claiming that Adhikari’s speech had communal overtones.

Election Commission has relied on an authenticated transcript of the relevant speech delivered last month, as received from the Chief Electoral Officer.

The notice refers to the speech in question where Adhikari said, “You are not giving votes to Begum. If you vote for Begum there will be mini-Pakistan… A Dawood Ibrahim has come up in your locality”.

Adhikari had also made reference to ‘lotus’ being accompanied by deities as per Hindu scriptures, urging the audience to vote for ‘lotus’.

The notice also highlights that the Constitutional Authority in charge of the elections have found that clauses (2) (criticising private lives of political opponents) and (3) (appealing to caste or communal feelings for securing votes) of the Moral Code of conduct was violated.

Suvendu is a former Trinamool Congress MP who joined BJP only recently and claimed that he would win Nandigram by a margin of 50,000 votes.

While BJP has been holding public meetings in the past few months promising a Sonar (Golden) Bengal, TMC is largely relying on Mamata’s welfare schemes.

Election Commission has asked Suvendu Adhikari to respond within 24 hours.

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