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Yogi Adityanath, Mayawati Punished For Poll Code Violation

16 April 2019

Election Commission has also barred BJP leader and Union Minister Maneka Gandhi for 48 hours and Samajwadi Party leader Azam Khan for 72 hours from poll campaigning.

Two days later, according to the Election Commission, Yogi Adityanath told a rally in Meerut about Mayawati's speech and said: "If the Congress, SP and BSP have faith in "Ali", we have faith in "Bajrang Bali", the followers of Bajrang Bali will not tolerate them".

Shortly before the Election Commission issued a notification banning the two leaders from campaigning, the Supreme Court on Monday asked it for details on what action had been taken against them for their remarks.

A SC bench headed by Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi ordered the representative of EC to appear before it on Tuesday.

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In its order related to Adityanath, the commission said, it "strongly condemns" the impugned statement made by him and "censured" him for "misconduct". "The hurried nature of the action shows that it was taken under pressure". The ban will start from 6 am tomorrow, for violating the EC's Model Code of Conduct by making objectionable statements in their speeches.

While the BSP leader had urged the Muslim community to vote only for the SP-BSP-RLD alliance candidates, the Chief Minister had said if the Congress, the Samajwadi Party and the BSP had faith in Ali, "we have faith in Bajrangbali". While Ali is revered by Muslims as Prophet Mohammad's successor, Bajrang Bali is another name for Lord Hanuman.

During the hearing, the bench asked the counsel for EC as to what action they have taken against Mayawati and Yogi Adityanath for alleged hate speeches.

The commission, which has been criticised by political parties across the spectrum for either turning a blind eye to poll code violations or being too slow, issued the gag orders soon after.

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In its order on Adityanath, the poll panel observed that being the chief minister of a state, he has an "added responsibility to not only uphold the basic tenets, including secularism, of the Constitution of India, but also to display the same in his public appearances".

"This will be remembered as a Black Day in the history of the EC", she said at a press conference.

The Election Commission on Monday imposed restrictions on the campaigning of four senior politicians for violating the model code of conduct in Uttar Pradesh.

The ban on Shah was lifted in a few days after he assured the poll body that he would not disturb public tranquility and law and order.

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Yogi Adityanath, Mayawati Punished For Poll Code Violation