More and more BJP leaders using anti-Muslim tropes: CPI(M) complains to EC

PM Modi had alleged during an election rally that if voted to power INDIA bloc will bulldoze the Ram temple in Ayodhya.


Published May 20, 2024 | 12:13 AMUpdatedMay 20, 2024 | 12:14 AM

Sitaram Yechury says more BJP leaders are using anti Muslim tropes

Communist Party of India (Marxist) general secretary Sitaram Yechury on Sunday, 19 May wrote to the Election Commission of India (ECI) alleging poll code violations by BJP leaders, and claimed more and more leaders of the saffron party are now “resorting to inciting hatred using anti-Muslim tropes”.

Yechury, in a post on X, shared a copy of his complaint to the ECI and said the poll panel must act immediately.

“The ECI must act immediately. ECI cannot consciously remain silent which is tantamount to the betrayal of its constitutional mandate to conduct free and fair polls,” Yechury said.

In his letter, he said the CPI(M) has filed a series of complaints against BJP leaders for Model Code of Conduct (MCC) violation.

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Several complaints against BJP leaders

“We have, through a series of complaints, brought to the attention of the ECI the serious violation of the Model Code of Conduct by several leaders of the Bharatiya Janata Party. Their resort to blatant lies, fabrication, fear-mongering and overtly communal appeals were highlighted in these complaints. Sadly, in none of these complaints has the ECI punished the culprits,” Yechury said.

“We had urged that the Commission act against offenders immediately to nip the disease in its bud. Unfortunately, the ECI sought not to act,” he said.

Yechury said on the complaint against PM Modi, in a departure from precedents, instead of sending a notice to him, the ECI has sent a notice to BJP president JP Nadda.

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Complaint against PM Narendra Modi

“In the complaint against the Prime Minister, the ECI, in a departure from precedents, instead of sending a notice to him, sent it to the President of the BJP after a lapse of many days and after the issue being raised in various forums. But this notice to the BJP has had no impact as is revealed by repeated violations both by the Prime Minister as well as other leaders of the BJP,” he said.

“More and more leaders of the BJP are now taking resort to inciting hatred against the Muslim community using anti-Muslim tropes,” he said.

Referring to PM Modi’s speech in Barabanki of Uttar Pradesh on 17 May, Yechury wrote in the letter that the PM said: “If SP and Congress come to power, Ram Lalla will be in a tent again and they will run a bulldozer on Ram temple”.

Additionally, he mentioned UP Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath’s remarks made at a rally in Bihar on the same day and also the remarks made by Assam CM Himanta Biswa Sarma at an election meeting in Raghunathpur in Siwan (Bihar) on 18 May.

CPI(M) quoted Adityanath’s speech where he said “The Congress and RJD are trying to rob SCs, STs and OBCs of quotas and divert those to Muslims”.

Sarma, at the Siwan poll meeting, had said that if the NDA returns to power, it would bring the UCC and put an end to “this business of marrying four times” and also said “We will shut down shops that produce mullas”, said the CPI(M)’s complaint.

“While reiterating our demand for action on the complaints we had lodged with the ECI earlier, we also urge the Commission to immediately act against Narendra Modi, Yogi Adityanath and Himanta Biswa Sarma for the above complaints,” Yechury said.

“We had through our earlier complaints warned the Commission that if it fails to take decisive action in cases where the offenders are those in high positions of power, the impartiality of the ECI will be in question and its credibility compromised,” he added.

The CPI(M) has filed several complaints against Modi and other BJP leaders for violation of the Model Code of Conduct, including those related to the PM’s speech in Banswara in Rajasthan.

While addressing a rally in Banswara on 21 April, Modi had suggested that if the Congress comes to power, it would “redistribute” wealth to Muslims.

The Election Commission had issued a notice to BJP president JP Nadda following complaints by opposition parties.

In another letter to the EC on 13 April, the CPI(M) had raised various instances where PM Modi made references to the Ram temple in Ayodhya, levelled allegations against opposition parties and allegedly labelled them as “opponents of the temple,” “being against Lord Ram” and “insulting Lord Ram”.

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