With the voting for the seventh and final phase of Lok Sabha going on, Trinamool Congress on Sunday wrote to the Election Commission of India alleging breach of Model Code of Conduct by Prime Minister Narendra Modi by undertaking a visit to the Kedarnath temple with the media giving it wide coverage.
Trinamool Congress writes to EC, states, 'Election campaign for last phase of polling for Lok Sabha polls is over, surprisingly Narendra Modi's Kedarnath Yatra is being widely covered by the media for the last 2 days. This is a gross violation of model code of conduct.'
— ANI (@ANI) May 19, 2019
"Election campaign for last phase of polling for Lok Sabha polls is over, surprisingly Narendra Modi's Kedarnath Yatra is being widely covered by the media for the last 2 days. This is a gross violation of model code of conduct," Trinamool Congress spokesperson Derek O'Brien said in the letter.
Accusing the prime minister of "blatantly" breaking the poll code on Sunday, Derek said, "Modi even announced the masterplan for Kedarnath temple and addressed the media and the people", adding that this is "morally incorrect and unethical".
Claiming that the "Modi chants" in the background were "well calculated" with the intention to influence voters, the TMC spokesperson said, "Every minute details of his activity during his visit is widely publicised with an ulterior motive to influence voters either directly or indirectly even on the date of polls."
"Election Commission, the highest body and the eyes and ears of the democratic process, remains blind and deaf to the gross violation of the MCC. I would request you to take immediate action and stop telecast such surreptitious and unfair campaign, which is also morally wrong," read the TMC statement.
Modi, who is on a two-day visit to Uttarakhand, reached Kedarnath on Saturday and is expected to be at Badrinath temple Sunday.
The prime minister on Sunday thanked the Election Commission for granting him permission to visit the Kedarnath shrine at a time when the Model Code of Conduct is in force.
He told reporters he did not ask for anything while praying as it is not his nature. "God has given us capacity to give and not demand," he said.
"I am fortunate to visit the temple on multiple occasions," he said while thanking the media for taking out time to visit Kedarnath at a time when the poll process is underway.
The media's presence, he said, will send a message that the town has been developed well.
Referring to the ongoing development works at the temple town, Modi said development should be a mission in which nature, environment and tourism should not be affected. He said he has been reviewing the work through video-conferencing.
With inputs from PTI
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Updated Date: May 19, 2019 16:36:31 IST