In an unexpected move, the Election Commission has censured Aam Aadmi Party Convener and Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal for his bribe remark at poll rally in Goa. Earlier EC had issued a notice to the Delhi Chief Minister for supposedly urging voters to accept money from the other parties, but vote for the AAP and breaching the moral code of conduct. The EC had also warned Kejriwal of strict action should he fail to explain his remarks by January 18.
Soon after the decision came out, Kejriwal took to social networking site Twitter and have called the order ‘completely wrong’. He has also mentioned that Lower Court has given order in his favour and have accused EC of ignoring court’s order. He also said that he will challenge Election Commission’s latest order in court.
EC order agnst me completely wrong. Lower court gave order in my favor. EC ignored court’s order. Will challenge EC’s latest order in court
— Arvind Kejriwal (@ArvindKejriwal) January 21, 2017
During a public rally in Benaulim in Goa earlier this month, Kejriwal said, “If Congress or BJP candidates offer money, do not refuse it. Accept it as your own money. But when it comes to voting, press the button against the name of the AAP candidate.” He further described the assembly polls in Punjab and Goa as a ‘dharma-yuddha’. When EC issued a notice to Kejriwal, he said that similar allegations were made against him during the 2015 Delhi elections, and the court had ruled in his favour.
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The EC, which had sent a notice to Kejriwal earlier this week, said that the Delhi Chief Minister’s statement amounts to ‘abetting and promoting electoral offence of bribery’. It also said that strict action will be taken should Kejriwal fail to respond by the afternoon of January 19. The Congress had taken offence to Kejriwal’s comments and had demanded the Election Commission to take an action over his remarks.
The assembly polls in Goa and Punjab have been scheduled for February 4.