New Delhi: The Election Commission Thursday evening imposed a 24-hour campaign ban on the BJP’s West Bengal president Dilip Ghosh for his “there will be Sitalkuchi in several places" remarks. The order said the Commission “sternly warns" Ghosh and advises him to desist from using such statements while making public utterances during the period when the Model Code of Conduct is in force.
The ban will in effect from 7 pm April 15 to 7 pm April 16, during which Ghosh will not be allowed to campaign.
The Trinamool Congress had approached the Commission against Ghosh.
The notice, issued by the poll body on Tuesday, had said that the Commission is of the considered view that Dilip Ghosh has in violation of various clauses of the Model Code of Conduct and provisions of the Representation of the People Act, 1951 and the Indian Penal Code “made statements that are provocative and can seriously incite the emotions". This could “lead to a breakdown of law and order thereby adversely affecting the election process", the notice said.
The Trinamool Congress had approached the Commission against Ghosh. The notice cited Ghosh’s alleged remarks in which the BJP leader said, “Where did so many naughty boys come from? Those naughty boys were shot at yesterday in Shitalkuchi. These naughty boys will not be there in Bengal.
“This is just the beginning. Those who thought that the central forces’ rifles were meant to be just for a show have well understood now the power of cartridges….There will be Shitalkuchi in several places. So be careful". He also reportedly said that “this will be carried on throughout Bengal. Those who will take the law in their own hands will be given a befitting answer." Four men were killed at a booth in the Sitalkuchi assembly constituency in Cooch Behar during the fourth phase polling on April 10 when CISF personnel opened fire after coming under attack from locals who “attempted to snatch their rifles".
The eight-phase assembly polls in West Bengal are being held between March 27 and April 29.