BJP complains to EC against Congress party’s advertisements


BJP leaders Mansukh Mandaviya and Ravi Shankar Prasad speak to the media after a meeting with the Election Commissioners at Nirvachan Sadan in New Delhi on November 21, 2023.
| Photo Credit: PTI

BJP on Tuesday moved the Election Commission of India (EC) with complaints against the Congress, accusing the opposition party of putting out advertisements in the form of a news article or opinion piece about a “wave” in its favour in the ongoing Assembly elections in Rajasthan.

A delegation from the BJP, which included Union minister Mansukh Mandaviya, Former Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad, BJP IT cell chief Amit Malviya and senior leader Om Pathak, moved the EC with complaints against the Congress also charging the party with resorting to “corrupt” practices by asking people to give missed calls on a mobile number to get benefits of its guarantees if it retains the power in the State.

“A registered number was generated for the caller, creating an impression that only the caller would benefit by voting for a particular candidate or party, specifically the Congress party,” said Mr. Mandaviya. The complaint also detailed that the Congress had inserted the advertisement and that Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot also posted on X about it.

Mr. Mandaviya said that such a move created a “narrative that only those who register themselves will get the benefits and others will not, and added it aims to mislead voters.”

Mr. Prasad highlighted that the Congress’ advertisements issued in Hindi in a couple of leading dailies about a “wave” in its favour, and was a “deliberate attempt to make an impression in the minds of voters that it is a news/opinion published after a survey”.

“The said advertisement is false, frivolous and wholly unverified, contrary to the facts and statistics available on record,” the BJP’s memorandum to the EC with the party demanding strict action, including an FIR, against the Congress. It also sought action against the newspapers concerned.

“We also requested the EC to issue guidelines to ensure that such an incident is not repeated in future polls,” Mr. Prasad said.

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