The Supreme Court on Thursday directed the Election Commission to decide on all Congress complaints against Prime Minister Narendra Modi and BJP chief Amit Shah by Monday (May 6).
The Congress had filed a plea in the apex court last week, claiming that the poll panel is delaying its decision in cases involving PM Modi and Shah. The grand old party has also accused the EC of being biased towards opposition leaders in handing out penalties to them for violation of Model Code of Conduct.
Senior Congress leader Abhishek Manu Singhvi told the top court that 11 complaints have been made before the EC against PM Modi and Amit Shah, but the poll body has taken decision on only two complaints so far.
It is interesting to note that the Commission has given a clean chit to prime minister in both the cases it has decided so far. Singhvi claimed that that even in these cases, the EC did not give a reasoned order to Congress.
The EC told the court that a decision on all complaints against PM Modi and Amit Shah would be taken by Wednesday and a report could be submitted to the court on Thursday. But the SC bench, led by Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi, ordered the EC to decide all the cases by Monday.
The poll panel tried to buy more time by arguing that it has to get the entire transcript from the ground and has to conduct elections too but the apex court refuses to accept the EC's arguments.
It may be recalled that last month the SC had pulled up the EC for failing to take action against leaders who had violated the Model Code of Conduct. At that time, the EC had told the SC that it was "toothless" and "powerless" to act against hate speeches, the court had asked the poll panel to get some awareness about its powers.
In an appeal to the top court, Congress had accused PM Modi and Amit Shah of using "hate speech" in their rallies in order to polarise voters. The Congress also said that these two leaders frequently referred to the operations by the armed forces for political advantage despite the ban by the EC.