The Election Commission of India (ECI) on Thursday issued a show-cause notice to Congress leader Priyanka Gandhi Vadra over her “envelop” remarks related to Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s temple visit. The party general secretary has been asked to respond to the notice by October 30 evening.
In its notice, the poll body said that the “relation between an individual and a deity cannot be a matter of public scrutiny and her statement diminishes the devotee in the general estimation of the public”.
The Commission issued the notice as it received a complaint on October 21 from the Leader of Opposition in the Rajasthan Assembly and from the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) on October 25. The complaint stated that during a public meeting in Dausa on October 20, Vadra made “false statements” in respect of PM Modi.
“It has been alleged that you have invoked the personal religious devotion of the Prime Minister. Further, it is averred that the relation between an individual and deity cannot be a matter of public scrutiny and your statement diminishes the devotee in the general estimation of the public,” the ECI said.
The poll body reminded that the provisions of the Model Code of Conduct (MCC) for political parties and candidates have come into force since October 9 when they announced election dates for five states.
The ECI quoted the video speech where she can be heard telling a public meeting in Dausa on October 20 that she saw it on TV that when an “envelop of donation” made by PM Modi at a temple was opened, it carried only Rs 21.
“You must have seen it. I saw it on TV, not sure if it is true or not. Some time ago, (Prime Minister) visited Devnarayan ji’s temple. Gave an envelope there. Now I saw on TV that after six months the envelope given by the Prime Minister was opened. People were thinking about what will be in that envelope given by the Prime Minister… Only Rs 21 was found,” ECI quoted her in Hindi.
She added that in a way, a similar thing is happening in the county.
“Big promises are made from stages. Various envelopes are being shown. But post elections, when these envelopes are opened, and it is time to show work there is nothing,” she said.