CPI(M) wants to know why EC won’t act against the misuse of govt machinery by PMO

Written by SabrangIndia | Published on: May 2, 2019

Sitaram Yechury, General Secretary of Communist Party of India (Marxist) wrote to Sunil Arora, Chief Election Commissioner, Election Commission of India on the misuse of official machinery by the Prime Minister for electoral purposes.


Sitaram Yechury
 
Sitaram Yechury, General Secretary of Communist Party of India (Marxist) wrote to Sunil Arora, Chief Election Commissioner, Election Commission of India on the misuse of official machinery by the Prime Minister for electoral purposes.
 
“Across the country, there is a growing concern about the manner in which the Election Commission of India is dealing with the complaints regarding the gross violation of the Model Code of Conduct by Shri Narendra Modi. Now a web magazine has published an article showing the manner in which government infrastructure and machinery has been brazenly used by the Prime Minister’s Office for securing information from various ministries, as well as, concerned state and district administration to provide inputs for preparing his election speeches. The article also provides documentary evidence to this effect,” Yechury wrote.
 
He referred to an article published by The Wire that provided grounds which led to the eventual disqualification of Ms. Indira Gandhi. “It seems that the violations attributed to Ms. Gandhi are of far less import than the current violations vis-à-vis those committed by Shri Narendra Modi,” he wrote.
 
He added that in dealing with violations of Model Code of Conduct, the ECI appeared to be not only halting, but carrying on at a pace which is emboldening the perpetrators and exemplifies the notion of `delayed justice’ amounting to its actual ‘denial.’
 
“Therefore the question is, is Shri Narendra Modi, a BJP candidate from Varanasi constituency in Uttar Pradesh and a star campaigner for the BJP is needed to be treated differently from the enforcement of MCC for the simple reason that he happens to be the incumbent Prime Minister?  We are constrained to raise this question because of want of appropriate response from the Commission in the past, which is adequately empowered by the Constitution to deal with this in a firm and decisive manner,” he wrote to the CEC.

Scroll reported that an email message showed that the government’s NITI Aayog think tank asked bureaucrats in Union territories and at least one BJP-ruled state to send the Prime Minister’s Office inputs on local area knowledge ahead of the leader’s visits to these places.

The Election Commission’s Model Code of Conduct, which has been in place since March 10, states that "ministers shall not combine their official visit with electioneering work and shall not also make use of official machinery or personnel during the electioneering work."