The Bharatiya Janata Party’s Telangana unit on Friday approached the Election Commission demanding action against Congress President Rahul Gandhi, alleging that his interview in an English daily was paid news and a violation of the Model Code of Conduct, reported PTI. The interview was published on Thursday, a day before voting was held for the state elections.

A delegation including Union ministers JP Nadda, Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi and party spokesperson Anil Baluni submitted a memorandum to the election panel along with a copy of the interview that was published from Hyderabad.

The delegation said “the reporting by way of an shining example of paid news”. It also alleged that the reporting was one-sided, while the front page coverage on the same was another example of paid news under the guise of reporting, according to The Hindu Business Line.

“Just a day before the polling in Telangana and Rajasthan, Rahul Gandhi through his interview, which was actually a paid news, tried to influence voters and electoral process also,” claimed Naqvi. “It is a violation of electoral reforms.”

Naqvi said as per the model code, no campaigning or “such interviews” should be done 48 hours before polling. He said that Gandhi, in the interview, cited a survey claiming that the Congress was winning in all five states.