Free Press Journal

Parties to be prosecuted for protesting without permission: Delhi Election Commission


New Delhi: The Delhi Election Commission has taken strong note of the recent protest by AAP workers at the BJP headquarters, which had later turned violent, and warned political parties of criminal prosecution if such incident is repeated in defiance of Model Code of Conduct.

The Model Code of Conduct came into force on March 3, when the Election Commission announced the dates for the Lok Sabha polls.

Making a strong case out of the show cause notice issued to AAP over the protest, Delhi Election Commission during an all-party meeting recently, asked political parties not to indulge in mutually assured destruction (MAD) syndrome, which would ultimately hamper their future prospect.

“In the meeting we made it clear that they should not indulge in such activities and pollute the atmosphere,” Delhi Chief Electoral Officer Vijay Dev said.

“In the first instance, opportunity is given to political parties to explain their position, but if such incidents keep on repeating in violation of model code of conduct, criminal prosecution of the party will be done.”

Dev further said de-recognition of a political party is also a possibility, but that option is used when there is no alternative left.

During the meeting, the parties were briefed about the provisions of the Model Code of Conduct and a booklet containing these were circulated among them. While the do’s and don’ts were explained, the AAP-BJP incident was quoted as well, Dev said.

“When MCC is in place, no dharna, rally, protest can be done without prior permission. This was prima facie violated in that particular incident,” Dev added.