Is Ram Mandir agenda not a violation of model code, petitioner asks ECI

    By Staff Reporter,

    Hyderabad: A complaint has been filed with Chief Election Commissioner of Election Commission of India to unregister and ban Bharatiya Janta Party for violation of election model code of conduct from past three consecutive national elections.

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    Advocate Ghulam Rabbani in his complaint submitted to ECI through A.P Chief Electoral Officer stated that as per Section 1 Clause (1) & (3) of the Model Code Of Conduct “No party or candidate shall include in any activity which may aggravate existing differences or create mutual hatred or cause tension between different castes and communities, religious or linguistic and there shall be no appeal to caste or communal feelings for securing votes. Mosques, Churches, Temples or other places of worship shall not be used as forum for election propaganda.”

    He submitted that Bharatyia Janata Party has been repeatedly violating the above mention section of the Model Code of Conduct from past 15 years.

    In the year 1998 the BJP in its Election Manifesto has mentioned in Chapter-2

    “The BJP is convinced that Hindutva has immense potentiality to re-energize this nation and strengthen and discipline it to undertake the arduous task of nation-building. This can and does trigger a higher level of patriotism that can transform the country to greater levels of efficiency and performance. It is with such integrative ideas in mind; the BJP joined the Ram Janmabhoomi movement for the construction of Shri Ram Mandir at Ayodhya. This greatest mass movement in post-Independence history reoriented the disoriented polity in India and strengthened the foundation of cultural nationalism.

    The BJP is committed to facilitate the construction of a magnificent Shri Ram Mandir at Ram Janmasthan in Ayodhya where a makeshift temple already exists. Shri Ram lies at the core of Indian consciousness. The BJP will explore all consensual, legal and constitutional means to facilitate the construction of Shri Ram Mandir at Ayodhya.”

    And in the year 2004 the Bharatiya Janata Party in its Election Manifesto has mentioned VISION DOCUMENT – 2004, 14 point in highlights that

    “Commitment to construction of a magnificent Ram Mandir at Ayodhya; Amicable resolution of the issue through dialogue for starting a new chapter in Hindu-Muslim relations”

    And in the section “Our Basic Mission and Commitments” mentions

    “Ram Mandir in Ayodhya: The BJP reaffirms its commitment to the construction of a Ram temple in Ayodhya. As Maryada Purushottam, Ram is an inspiring cultural symbol of India. His birthplace in Ayodhya is also associated with the religious sentiments of crores of Hindus. The BJP remains committed to its stand that the judiciary’s verdict in this matter should be accepted by all. However, we believe that dialogue, and a negotiated settlement

    in an atmosphere of mutual trust and goodwill, are the best way of achieving this goal. The BJP appeals to the religious and social leaders of the Hindu and Muslim communities to speed up the process of dialogue and bring it to an amicable and early fruition. We hope that these efforts will succeed in heralding a new chapter of amity in Hindu-Muslim relations and fortify national integration.”

    And in the year 2009 the Bharatiya Janata Party in its Election Manifesto has mentioned in section DEFENDING THE CIVILISATION point 1, “The BJP remains committed to the construction of a grand Ram Mandir at Ayodhya”.

    Adv. Rabbani claims that above mentioned item’s from BJP’s manifesto establishes that Party has been contesting last three elections by including the construction of grand Ram Mandir at Ayodhya as their main agenda which is clearly against the rules prescribed by ECI and violation of Model Code of Conduct for the guidance of Political Parties and candidates.

    Ram Mandir and Babari Masjid issue in the past has sparked several communal riots among communities. Petitioner expressed his surprise that this communal conflict propagation as an election agenda has not been noticed by the ECI.

    For the above mentioned cause, he appealed ECI to unregister BJP and to ban it from contesting from any election in future.

    In the past also there have been complains filed to ECI to unregister political parties, but ECI repeatedly expressed its lack of authority for doing so.

    In the recent case A.S. Rao, a Sangh Parivar activist filed a complaint with ECI to unregister MIM after hate speech controversy of Akbaruddin Owaisi. ECI again declined in doing so, citing lack of jurisdiction over the matter.

    Aggrieved by ECI ruling, petitioner Rao approached the Andhra Pradesh High Court. On Dec 17 Justice Sai found the matter as of larger public importance and posted the PIL for the hearing on divisional bench.

    Adv. Ghulam Rabbani, speaking with TCN candidly acknowledge that ECI might return him with same ruling and hence he is already planning to file a similar PIL in High Court to merge it with existing litigation of banning MIM to make the legal matter more broad in its consequence.

    He hopes, with expected stiff ruling from High Court, BJP will refrain from making Ram Mandir an election issue, at least in its manifesto for the coming 2014 elections.