Plea to stall release of CD against Cong

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Shimla, Nov 14: A Congress leader has approached the Himachal Pradesh High Court to restrain BSP leader Vijai Singh Mankotia and BJP leaders Jai Ram Thakur, Shanta Kumar and Prem Kumar Dhumal, from releasing, circulating and playing any controversial CD in the run up to the state assembly elections.

Kuldeep Singh Pathania, party's general secretary and former legislator from Bamsan constituency of Hamirpur district, filed a petition in the court yesterday to pre-empt the release of any fresh CD against the Chief Minister and the Congress.

Since the release of an audio CD by Mr Mankotia during the Hamirpur parliamentary bye-elections, almost six months ago, had adversely affected the party's prospects, the petitioner urged the court to restrain the leaders from releasing any such tape during the elections.

Mr Pathania said he had approached the court following the BSP leader's reported statements in the press that he would soon come out with another CD against the Congress leaders.

Referring to the Supreme Court's earlier orders that telecasting and broadcasting contents of unauthorised CD ''wrong'', he said such attempts amounted to corrupt practices and warranted the interference of this court.

The Congress leader said since the chief minister was the party's star campaigner in the assembly polls, the release of any fresh CD would not only adversely affect the polls but would tarnish the image of the longest serving chief minister of the country.

He also sought the court's directions to the Election Commission to issue instructions to the political parties not to release any such tape.

The court has posted the matter for hearing on November 19.


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