EC 'unhappy' over violation of Code by minister, MLA

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Hyderabad, May 23 (UNI) The Election Commission today expressed ''serious displeasure'' over the ''violation'' of the Model Code of Conduct by Andhra Pradesh Rural Development Minister G Chinna Reddy and Congress MLA Swarna Sudahakar by addressing an election meeting in a Government School.

The EC, in its order, noted that ''there has been a violation of the Model Code of Conduct. As a responsible Minister and MLA both of you should have abided by the Code. The Election Commission hopes that you both will exercise caution in future,'' Chief Electoral Officer I V Subba Rao told reporters here today.

Mr Chinna Reddy is the second minister after Agriculture Minister N Raghuveera Reddy to incur the ''displeasure'' of the EC. The Agriculture Minister had criticised the EC even before it took a decision on a TDP complaint, praying for stopping the 'Ryutu Chaitanya Yatra.' Meanwhile, State Ministers K Rosaiah, K Jana Reddy and P Lakshmaiah submitted their explanations to the notices served by the EC for alleged violation of the Code.

Mr Rosaiah was served the notice for reportedly telling the media that the Government had an action plan to curb price rise and was unable to announce it as the Code was in force, he said.

The other two Ministers had allegedly addressed an election meeting at a government school in Warangal in violation of the Code.

However, the Warangal District Collector and the Superintendent of Police, who were asked to submit a detailed report to the EC on the violation of the Code, also submitted their explanations.

Meanwhile, a five-member BJP delegation led by the state party General Secretary C Samba Murthy today submitted a memorandum to the state Chief Electoral Officer, urging him to stop the ministers, who were served notices by the EC for violating the Code, from campaigning for the byelections scheduled for May 29.

The BJP also urged Mr Rao to take action against them.

Mr Murthy, in the memorandum, alleged that even after the Commisison issued notices, the ministers were moving freely and misusing official machinery to lure the voters.

He also maintained that Chief Minister Y S Rajasekhara Reddy, who campaigned for the Congress in Musheerabad Assembly constituency on May 18, addressed a meeting on the land belonging to the Endowment Department.

UNI SM/AP SB CS1940

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