AAP gets poll panel rap over communal appeal

    By IANS,

    New Delhi : The Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) Friday got a rap from the Election Commission (EC) which said it was not satisfied with the party’s explanation over communal appeal made during the Delhi assembly polls.

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    Then AAP convener and Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal was questioned by the poll panel for an alleged violation of the Model Code of Conduct by way of an appeal on grounds of religion to Muslim voters to support his party in the assembly elections.

    The EC, in its letter, highlighted that the first reply from the party was signed by Pankaj Gupta, national secretary of the AAP.

    After an objection was raised, another reply, signed by Kejriwal, was filed.

    The letter added that the commission was not satisfied with the response.

    “Notwithstanding the averments made by you to justify the contents of the pamphlets, the fact remains that you have made an appeal in that pamphlet to a particular religious community for securing votes in favour of your party, which, the commission considers, is violation of the Model Code of Conduct,” the commission said.

    “Now, therefore, having regard to the totality of the facts and circumstances of the case and submissions and contentions made by you in your reply under reference, the commission hereby conveys its concern, and cautions you to be more careful in the election campaigns of your party in future,” it added.

    The pamphlet, whose objectionable parts the Election Commission has reproduced in its notice, purportedly has AAP saying that, “Delhi’s Muslims should support Aam Aadmi Party in the forthcoming polls”.

    “We (AAP) are not seeking votes for power or money but for rooting out corruption from the system and building a corruption-free India where people belonging to all religions can live in peace,” the pamphlet said.