The district administration in Jharkhand’s Ranchi on Monday filed a First Information Report against Minister of State for Civil Aviation Jayant Sinha for allegedly violating the Model Code of Conduct while speaking at an event in the city last week, The Times of India reported. Sinha is a Bharatiya Janata Party MP from Hazaribagh constituency in Jharkhand.
The Model Code of Conduct came into effect on March 10, when dates for the upcoming Lok Sabha elections were announced. The elections will be held between April 11 and May 19, with the counting of votes slated on May 23.
An unidentified police official told PTI that the minister, while addressing the students at Indian Institute of Management, Ranchi, on March 16, had allegedly sought their “blessings” for his party for another five years.
“We had received a complaint regarding his speech,” Ranchi Deputy Commissioner Rai Mahimapat Ray told the Hindustan Times. “We sought video recording of his speech from the IIM Ranchi. After analysing it by video viewing team, a line of vote appeal was found, which violates model code of conduct.”
The FIR was registered under Section 123 of the Representation of the People Act, 1951.
The Jharkhand Mukti Morcha on Sunday wrote to the chief electoral officer in the state, accusing Sinha of using the convocation to campaign for his party. “During his 15-minute speech, Sinha congratulated the IIM-R [students] for three minutes, and the rest of the time, he delivered political speech detailing five years’ achievements of the nation and Jharkhand under BJP rule, while asking people to vote for the BJP and exhorting them to make a particular person the prime minister,” the JMM’s Supriyo Bhattacharya told the Hindustan Times.