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Home / India News / 2007 / May 2007 / May 8, 2007
BJP CD row: EC directs party to officially condemn its contents
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BJP CD row: EC directs party to officially condemn its contents

Coming down heavily on the BJP for defending the contents of the controversial CD after having disowned it, the Election Commission today directed the party to make an official declaration condemning the contents.

New Delhi, May 8 : Coming down heavily on the BJP for defending the contents of the controversial CD after having disowned it, the Election Commission today directed the party to make an official declaration condemning the contents.

The Commission said it has seen some press reports and has received complaints from several political parties, including the Congress, the BSP, and the CPI(M) that the BJP was trying to mislead the EC on the issue.

"Certainly, this has created a doubt - a genuine doubt - in the minds of the general public whether the respondent party (BJP) has disowned the CD and condemned its contents or stands by its contents and defends the same," Chief Election Commissioner N. Gopalaswami said in a statement.

Asserting that the Commission sees "quite a force" in these submissions, the EC order said: "When the respondent party has categorically stated before the Commission, both in their oral arguments as well as in the written submissions, that they do not approve of the contents of the CD, the respondent party should come out with an unequivocal and unambiguous declaration that they strongly condemn the contents of the CD".

The Commission said that such declaration by the BJP should be made "urgently" and be given wide publicity at both national and local levels, particularly in Uttar Pradesh. "A compliance report in this behalf should be sent by the respondent party (BJP) to the Commission by May 15," it said.

It further said the BJP should categorically condemn the CD's contents so that the stand taken by it before the Commission becomes publicly known to the country and public at large and "any misgivings or apprehensions in their minds arising out of the distribution, dissemination of the CD or its contents stand dispelled and removed forthwith".

The EC went on to say that the matter was not closed by it with the present order, adding that the state police were making investigation into all relevant aspects of production and distribution of the CD, and as to who were responsible for its production.

"If it reveals the involvement of the leaders of the party at the national or state level in the production, distribution and dissemination of the CD, the Commission reserves its right to take further action," the order said.

The EC said that political parties have pointed out that several important BJP leaders, including Kalyan Singh, Lalji Tandon and even L.K. Advani, had publicly stated that there was nothing offensive in the CD.

ANI

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