Mumbai: Reliance Industries Limited (RIL) has in a statement released to the media, said that Election Commission should be kept away from what it called the “politics of disinformation”.

Without naming the Aaam Aadmi Party (AAP), which had recently raised questions over the government’s alleged move to raise gas prices, the RIL stakeholders communication said: “A political party has written to the Election Commission (EC) to keep on hold a bonafide decision of the Union Cabinet on gas pricing. The party has a history of ill-informed diatribe.

It is thus important to examine established conventions in this regard.”

“When the model code of conduct (MCC) is in force, the government in power cannot take any new decision. New decisions mean undue benefit to the ruling political party. By implication, decisions already taken by the state or the central government continue to be implemented.”

“For example, schemes such MNREGA, Sarva Siksha Abhiyan, etc, which are for the benefit of the masses continue to be in effect. Similarly, contracts and projects already awarded prior to the kicking in of MCC continue to be honoured. The decision to implement the new price from April 1, 2014 is part of this contractual obligation.”

“This decision was taken keeping in view of the fact that the current gas prices are valid only till March 31, 2014. The existing code of conduct came into force on 5th March 2014 and the cabinet decided on the new gas price policy on June 27th, 2013 and notified the same on January 10th 2014.”

“Even a bare reading of this factual position leads to a simple conclusion: change in gas pricing from April 1 is not a new decision but only implementation of a cabinet decision taken in June 2013. The notification of the gas price is a mere formality and not a policy decision which will lead to any political benefit to an elected government and the Union Cabinet several months before MCC kicked in.”

“Ensnaring the Hon’ble EC in this pursuit of political disinformation is regrettable. The video “Keep EC Away from Politics of Disinformation” features Umesh Upadhyay, RIL spokesperson, and is being shared to enhance Stakeholder Communication.”

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