Petrol price announcement amounts to violation of Poll code': BJP

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New Delhi, Nov 26 (UNI) Taking note of Petroleum Minister Murli Deora's statement that the UPA Government will take appropriate decision on revising the prices of petroleum products on the conclusion of current round of assembly elections, the BJP today said it was a policy announcement violating the Model Code of Conduct of polls aiming to influence voters in favour of the ruling party in four states going to polls.

Seeking the Election Commission to initiate punitive action under symbols rules for violating the Model Code of Conduct, the BJP said the firm indication that the prices will be revised in view of the fallen prices of petroleum crude in the international market was a deliberate attempt to influence the voters in Delhi, Madhya Pradesh, Rajasthan and Jammu and Kashmir elections. The intention was to influence the voters by the Congress party which was in power both in Delhi and at the Centre, BJP Vice President Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi and BJP spokesman Ravishankar Prasad told newspersons after their meeting.

They said the EC should take note of the policy statement of Mr Deora, also a senior leader of Congress. The crude prices had fallen even before the elections to the states were announced but the government instead of reducing the prices deliberately chose this timing to influence the votes. The clear indication of prices review would be done after elections only reveals the motives -- catching the votes, they said.

Replying to a question, Mr Prasad felt that the recent blasts resulting in the killing of seven people seemed to be ''sponsored'' by ruling coalition in Maharashtra. How else one could explain the statement of NCP Chief Sharad Pawar's statement that it was the handiwork of 'Hindu group', at a time when the investigations were still on, he said. The Home Department in the state was handled by NCP, he added.

Mr Naqvi said the Congress led UPA was attempting to palm off all terror sponsored by Pakistan's ISI to Pragya Singh Thakur. They first branded Sikhs as terrorists and turned towards Muslims and now they want to brand Hindus and the entire India as a country of terrorists, he alleged. This stand will only weaken India's stand that Pakistan was stoking terror from across the border through the organisations like Lashkar-e-Toiba, Jaish-e-Mohammad and SIMI. "When the ISI is responsible for the violence in India, they want to equate Pragya with Pakistan", Mr Naqvi alleged.

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