New Delhi: Ahead of the upcoming Assembly polls, the Election Commission (EC) on Saturday issued a show cause notice to Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) chief Arvind Kejriwal for alleged violation of Model Code of Conduct with his remarks alleging that BJP is trying to incite communal violence in the capital city. The EC have also asked him to explain his "unverified" allegations against BJP state unit president Satish Upadhyay.
According to reports, the notice has been issued following Satish Upadhyay's complaint. The EC has also directed the former Delhi CM to explain the matter before 3 pm on January 20, failing which the poll body will take a decision without any further reference to him.
EC referred to a complaint by Upadhyay in which he had alleged that in a press conference the AAP leader had claimed that BJP is trying to incite communal violence in Delhi and has spread communal violence in Trilokpuri and Nandnagri and is also trying to do so in Nangloi and Bawana.
The EC also referred to his alleged remarks that BJP is also responsible for attacks on churches in Delhi. The EC said it is prima facie of the view that by making the statement, "you (Kejriwal) have violated the provision of sub-para (1) of para I of Model Code of Conduct."
It reminded Kejriwal of provision in the Model Code of Conduct which provides that "no party or candidate shall indulge in any activity which may aggravate existing differences or create mutual hatred or cause tension between different castes and communities, religious or linguistic".
The notice also said that the EC has received an another complaint from Upadhyay alleging that Kejriwal leveled "false, baseless and unverified allegations against him and Asish Sood, general secretary of the Bharatiya Janata Party's Delhi unit."
Reacting to which the EC reminded Kejriwal of another provision of the Model Code which states that "criticism of other parties or their workers based on unverified allegations or distortion shall be avoided...."
Meanwhile, BJP welcomed the EC's move. In a quick reaction, Upadhyay said, "We welcome the EC's decision of taking cognisance of our complaint. The commission has taken cognisance of his (Kejriwal) attempts to inflict personal damage and tarnish my image. He had remarked that BJP is inciting communal tensions in Trilokpuri and Bawana and the Commission has taken cognisance of that as well."
Earlier, Upadhyay, flanked by colleagues Prabhat Jha and Vijay Goel, had filed a complaint with the Election Commission on Thursday, accusing Kejrwial of defaming him. However, the AAP chief insisted that he had evidence to support his claim and was ready to face defamation charges from the BJP leader.
On Wednesday, Kejriwal had alleged a nexus between Upadhyay and power companies in the capital.
In the poll-bound state the Model Code came into force on January 12 as soon as the EC announced the schedule for Assembly Elections. While voting takes place on February 7, the results will be out three days later.
(With Agency inputs)