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FIR Against BJP's Puri LS Candidate Sambit Patra For Violating Model Code Of Conduct

18 April 2019


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Puri: Election Commission flying squad has lodged a FIR against BJP candidate for Puri Lok Sabha seat Sambit Patra for violating the Model Code of Conduct, informed Puri Collector and District Magistrate Jyotiprakash Das on Thursday.

Das informed that earlier, when Sambit was not the contesting candidate, a show cause notice had been issued against him for taking out a political rally in Puri and he had replied to it.

Later, when he registered as the contesting candidate the name and address of printers and publishers were absent from his banners, posters and hoardings despite being made aware about the ECI guidelines regarding it during the filing of nominations.

It attracts penalty under Section 127A of The Representation of the People Act, 1951, said Das.

Further, there was an appeal in the posters and banners stating 'Lord Jagannath has called me', which attracts penalty under Section 123 (3) of The Representation of the People Act, 1951, he added.

The Collector further informed that a show cause in this regard had been issued to Patra. In reply Patra had stated that it may have been printed by one of his supporters without his consent.

However, Das said it is the bounding duty of Patra to look into all these things when he is contesting as a candidate. As the message is still being displayed in the posters and banners on his campaign vehicle, an FIR has been registered against Patra at the Sea Beach Police Station.

It is worthwhile to mention that sub-section (1) of Section 127A provides that no person shall print or publish, or cause to be printed or published, any election pamphlet or poster which does not bear on its face the names and addresses of the printer and the publisher. The other requirements to be fulfilled in this connection have been given in sub-section (2) thereof.

Sub-section (4) of Section 127A states that any person who contravenes any of the provisions of sub-section (1) or sub-section (2) shall be punishable with imprisonment for a term which may extend to six months, or with fine which may extend to two thousand rupees, or with both.

Similarly, the Section 123 (3A) says, "The promotion of, or attempt to promote, feelings of enmity or hatred between different classes of the citizens of India on grounds of religion, race, caste, community, or language, by a candidate or his agent or any other person with the consent of a candidate or his election agent for the furtherance of the prospects of the election of that candidate or for prejudicially affecting the election of any candidate."

The Supreme Court had also in one of its judgements ruled that politicians cannot seek votes on the grounds of caste, creed or religion.

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Jyotiprakash Das, Collector & District Magistrate, Puri