The Election Commission on Tuesday issued showcause notices to television channels Zee TV and &TV for airing two shows that promote central government schemes, reported Asian Age. The channels have been asked to reply within 24 hours. &TV is a part of the Zee group.
“We had received complaints of violation of Model Code of Conduct by promoting government schemes in the serials of Zee TV and &TV,” said Maharashtra Additional Chief Electoral Officer Dilip Shinde. “Taking cognisance of these complaints, the Election Commission has issued notices to the producers of respective serials asking them to reply within a day. Further action will be taken after receiving their reply.”
In Bhabiji Ghar Par Hai, a character is seen praising the prime minister without naming him while hailing the Swachch Bharat scheme. In the same show, a woman tells her husband about the Ujjwala scheme on free LPG connections. In the other show, Tujhse Hai Raabta, a character explains how a loan of Rs 10 lakh can be availed under the Mudra scheme.
Maharashtra Congress General Secretary Sachin Sawant said it was shocking that television serials like Bhabiji Ghar Par Hai and Tujhse Hai Raabta were being used to promote schemes like Ujjwala, Swachch Bharat Abhiyan. They also asked the poll body to file cases against the makers and actors of the two serials as well as the Bharatiya Janata Party. “The EC should also hold BJP responsible for running their campaign on the channels,” Sawant told Mumbai Mirror. “It also shows how BJP is muzzling democracy and setting the wrong precedent. This trend is dangerous for the country. The party is using deceptive and illegal means to garner votes.”
The Congress said it will also complain about another serial Tula Pahate Re on the Zee Marathi channel for promoting the Make in India scheme.
A Zee group spokesperson said the content was in public interest, reported Mumbai Mirror.