Gujarat CM reminds Congress of 2012 on allegations of BJP influencing EC
Gujarat chief minister Vijay Rupani on Sunday refuted Congress' allegations that the Election Commission had deferred the announcement of Gujarat Assembly election dates under "government's pressure".
Rupani accused the opposition party of having influenced the Election Commission's announcement of Gujarat Assembly poll dates in 2012.
In 2012 (Assembly election), the Election Commission ensured at the behest of the Congress that the model code of conduct was in force for a record time to prevent Modiji from working, because of which the state government could not take up development work," Rupani said at an election programme organised here by news channel India TV.
The Chief Minister also denied the allegation that the BJP government was interfering with the Election Commission's decisions.
The EC had on Thursday announced that the assembly elections in Himachal Pradesh will be held in a single phase on November 9 and the results will be declared on December 18.
The poll panel did not announce the dates for assembly elections in Gujarat, but Chief Election Commissioner AK Joti said that the elections will be held before December 18.
The Congress had on Friday attacked the BJP for "pressuring" the EC to delay the announcement of Gujarat elections and alleged that "past practices, conventions and precedents" were being set aside to help the ruling party in the state.
The opposition party alleged that the "delay" in announcing Gujarat Assembly election schedule was to enable Prime Minister Narendra Modi to act as a "false Santa Claus" to offer sops and use "jumlas" (rhetoric) during his October 16 visit to his home state.
The model code of conduct would have come into immediate effect in Gujarat had the poll schedule been announced, it added.
Countering the Congress' allegations, Rupani said, "Congress was complaining that the BJP will advance election because of the UP result...we are not interfering in the process of the Election Commission...we are not delaying elections".
"It is my responsibility to work for the public till the last day. Until the EC declares dates of elections, we will keep working for the public. There is nothing wrong in it. It is our right to work until the dates are declared," the Chief Minister said.
He said the opposition should raise an objection only when there is an interference in the election process.