Tripura EC serves notice to Congress, BJP for violation of Model Code of Conduct

Guwahati: The BJP and Congress have issued show cause notices from the Chief Electoral Officer (CEO) Tripura for allegedly breaking the model code of conduct. They have till February 17 to respond.

CEO Kiran Gitte stated in a letter to Congress that the Model Code of Conduct’s clauses took effect on January 18 after the Commission announced Tripura’s general elections for the Legislative Assembly.

“Whereas, the Commission has fixed hours of the poll from 0700hrs to 1600hrs on 16.02.2023 and accordingly the forty-eight hours was started from 1600hrs on 14th February.  Whereas Section 126 (1)(b) of the Representation of the People Act, 1951 prohibits the display to the public any election matter by means of cinematograph, television or other similar apparatus in polling area during the period of forty-eight hours ending with the hour fixed for the conclusion of the poll for any election in that polling area. Further, Sub-section (3) of said Section 126 explains that “election matter” means any matter intended or calculated to influence or affect the result of an election”, the letter reads.

The CEO said that an appeal for a vote in favour of INC has been tweeted from the “Tripura Congress” handle at 11. 42 AM on 16. February and post a tweet,  “People of Tripura spontaneously casting vote for Congress. This time Congress will come.”

“Whereas, Section 126 (2) of the Representation of the People Act, 1951 states that any person who contravenes the provisions of sub-section (1) shall be punishable with imprisonment for a term which may extend to two years or with fine, or with both, Therefore, an opportunity is provided to you to take corrective action at the earliest and explain your party’s stand for the said violation. Your explanation must reach the undersigned by 5:00 PM on 17 February “, the letter reads.

The CEO has also sought an explanation from the BJP for an appeal for a vote in favour of the BJP and tweeted “For a safe and brighter future, vote for BJP.

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