The BJP in Tamil Nadu has charged Congress MP Rahul Gandhi of breaching the Model Code of Conduct by conducting a “surrogate election drive” with students of a school in the Kanyakumari district earlier this week, before the next month’s Assembly election.
The chief of the party’s state unit, L Murugan said to the Chief Electoral Officer, alleging “the political campaign in educational institutions has violated provisions of (the) Model Code of Conduct” and calling for “strict action, including prohibitory orders” against Mr. Rahul Gandhi.
“During his visit, he is seen saying: ‘What India now is going to need is another freedom struggle’ and ‘There is a lot of anger that’s being spread in the country, a lot of fear in the country, and that is what we have to fight. We have to fight the division, the anger, and the fear and once again make India happy, comfortable, fearless, and united’,” Mr. Murugan wrote to the Electoral office.
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The Congress has yet to comment on this. However, local supporters of the party even denied any violation and said: “It is an indication of Rahul connected with the masses and the BJP is scared”.
Rahul Gandhi has conducted many visits to the southern state, where the Congress has associated with Opposition Leader MK Stalin and his DMK, ahead of the April 6 poll. Two parts of the Indian Penal Code, including one relating to sedition, were allegedly violated by Rahul, according to the BJP.
The BJP, which is allied with the ruling AIADMK, filed the complaint after a visit to St Joseph’s Matric Higher Secondary School in Kanyakumari’s Mulagumoodu area.
Mr. Gandhi spoke with the students on a variety of topics, such as the NEET (National Entrance & Eligibility Test) controversy, the contentious new National Education Policy (NEP), and the significance of taking teachers and students into account while making any policy.
“If I force you to read, then it is arrogance, but if I ask what do you require, then it is humility. Arrogance creates problems whereas humility resolves problems,” Mr. Gandhi told students.
The former Congress chief also managed to draw cheers and applause after picking up a “push-up challenge” from a student. A clip of the student and he did one push-up after the other was extensively shared on social media.
On April 6, Tamil Nadu elects a new 234-member Assembly. The results will be announced on May 2nd.