Bar Assam Minister Ashok Singhal from by-poll campaign: Cong leader writes to CEC

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Such remarks are very unfortunate because, under a democratic system, there is provision for equal development for all irrespective of race, religion and language: Debabrata Saikia
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Guwahati: Congress Legislature Party (CLP) Debabrata Saikia has filed a complaint before the Chief Election Commissioner against Assam Minister Ashok Singhal for allegedly violating the Model Code of Conduct by making unconstitutional remarks ahead of the by-polls in the state.

In a letter to the CEC, Saikia said Singhal had indulged in “unconstitutional activities” and appealed to the Election Commission to bar him from further campaigning in the upcoming by-polls in five constituencies.

“While participating in an election rally at Gossaigaon constituency, the Minister stated that there will be no development in the constituency if people do not vote for BJP in the by-election,” the senior Congress leader said.

He also claimed in his letter that Singhal had said the construction work on a dyke would be started within two months after voting for the BJP to power.

“On the other hand, he said that the work would not be carried out if people do not vote for BJP, asking people publicly to give with one hand and take with the other.

“Such remarks are very unfortunate because, under a democratic system, there is provision for equal development for all irrespective of race, religion and language. Actually, the voters are being blackmailed through such statements,” Saikia said.

Instilling fear among voters and delivering threats for forcefully garnering votes are gross violations of Constitutional spirit and against Constitutional norms, and violates election Model Code of Conduct, he added.

“I, therefore, urge you to issue an order barring Ashok Singhal from campaigning in the election in light of his unconstitutional activities and violation of the Model Code of Conduct,” Saikia wrote.

Earlier, the opposition leader requested Chief Election Commissioner Anup Chandra Pandey last Friday to bar Chief Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma from campaigning for the upcoming by-election in the state’s five assembly constituencies on October 30.

“I demand that the CM be barred from campaigning for the Assam by-elections on October 30 because he has broken the EC’s model code of conduct on several recent instances, said Saikia.

At a byelection campaign meeting under Bhawanipur LAC, the CM pointed to a person in the crowd and stated he should be given a house, as well as asking whoever is responsible for house allocation in that locality to provide him with a house (copy of video enclosed) under the PMAY, Saikia said in a letter.

It may be mentioned that by-elections will take place in Thowra, Mariani, Bhabanipur, Tamulpur and Gossaigaon on October 30.

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