Karnataka 'Sovereignty' Remark: EC Asks Congress To Clarify And Rectify The Tweet Attributed To Sonia Gandhi
The Election Commission on Monday (8 May) asked the Congress party to clarify and take corrective action regarding a social media post attributed to former party chief Sonia Gandhi on the "sovereignty" of Karnataka.
The move came as the election campaign for the Karnataka Assembly polls ended on 8 May.
After the BJP's complaint seeking de-recognition of the Congress and action against Gandhi over the use of the term in a campaign speech in Hubballi, the EC has written to Congress president Mallikarjun Kharge.
The Election Commission has observed that the said tweet violates provisions of the Representation of the People Act. It further asked the Congress president to "clarify and take rectification measures" in regard to the tweet attributed to Sonia Gandhi, who is the chairperson of Congress Parliamentary Party (CPP).
“You are requested to clarify and take rectification measures in respect of the social media post which has been put up on the INC Twitter handle and attributed to Chairperson CPP," the EC said, reports The Hindu.
Earlier in the day, a BJP delegation headed by Union Minister Bhupendra Yadav submitted a copy of the Congress tweet quoting Sonia Gandhi to the EC.
Today, BJP delegation headed by Bhupendra Yadav submitted a Congress tweet to the EC, quoting CPP chairperson Ms. Gandhi in a memorandum.
The tweet from the Congress official handle said, “CPP Chairperson Smt. Sonia Gandhi ji sends a strong message to 6.5 crore Kannadigas: ‘The Congress will not allow anyone to pose a threat to Karnataka’s reputation, sovereignty or integrity’".
While Yadav led delegation submitted a memorandum in Delhi, the Karnataka BJP also filed a complaint with the State EC, seeking the registration of an FIR against Gandhi.
“Karnataka is a very important member-state in the Union of India and any call to protect the sovereignty of a member-state of the Union of India amounts to a call for secession and is fraught with perilous and pernicious consequences,” the complaint said.
The complaint said that sovereign by definition is an independent nation. “When a country becomes independent, that country is called a sovereign country. India is a sovereign country and the State of Karnataka is a proud part in it. Till today no one raised any question about the integrity of Kannadigas with the sovereignty of the nation," it said.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi also launched a scathing attack on Congress on the issue at a public meeting in Mysuru district on Sunday, and accused the party of openly advocating for “separating” Karnataka from India.
Meanwhile, the Congress filed a counter-complaint with the poll body in Bengaluru seeking a case against Prime Minister Narendra Modi, accusing him of making a false statement that “Congress is trying to disintegrate Karnataka from Bharat”.
According to the complaint, the Prime Minister made the “false, baseless, frivolous” allegations solely to gain votes for BJP, and his statement lacked responsibility.
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