Kejriwal government’s advertisement targeting Narendra Modi comes under the scanner of Publicity Department

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New Delhi | Updated: September 30, 2016 8:14:04 AM

The AAP government's agenda to target the Modi government hit a roadblock recently when a newly launched advertisement came under scanner. The ad has been questioned by Directorate of Information and Publicity as it aims at a letter that the Delhi CM recently wrote to PM Narendra Modi accusing the central government's I-T department of harassing small businessmen.

Earlier as well the Kejriwal government was slammed for the huge amounts of funds being utilised only for ad campaigns, which was way more than the previous government's. (Reuters)Earlier as well the Kejriwal government was slammed for the huge amounts of funds being utilised only for ad campaigns, which was way more than the previous government’s. (Reuters)

The AAP government’s agenda to target the Modi government hit a roadblock recently when a newly launched advertisement came under scanner. The ad has been questioned by Directorate of Information and Publicity as it aims at a letter that the Delhi CM recently wrote to PM Narendra Modi accusing the central government’s I-T department of harassing small businessmen.

The advertisement, as per a senior official of the Directorate of Information and Publicity violates the Supreme Court guidelines and needs to be pulled off. The official said that as per the content, it as making allegations against the PM,which is not appropriate considering the position he holds in the nation.

Citing SC guidelines, the publicity department said “display material” in government advertisements had to be “free of political or partisan argument” and had to “maintain political neutrality”, without directly attacking the views and actions of the opposition.

The communication pointed out that the grounds of the advertisement were ‘political’ and making a letter addressed to the public exchequer public is ‘un-warranted’.

“SC guidelines prescribe that heads of government departments and agencies shall be responsible for ensuring compliance with these guidelines and shall follow a procedure of certification of compliance before advertisements are released to the media. The present advertisement is not owned by any HOD and hence it is not known who is responsible for ensuring compliance of the guidelines,” stated the communication.

However, no department from the AAP-led government has yet taken the responsibility of forwarding the advertisement.

As per Indian Express sources, the advertisement was sent by the ofice of Manish Sisodia, the deputy CM of Delhi who also is in charge of the publicity department. Though any official confirmation on the same is yet to come.

Earlier as well the Kejriwal government was slammed for the huge amounts of funds being utilised only for ad campaigns, which was way more than the previous government’s. While the Sheila Dikshit govt used Rs 25.25 cr in 2013-14, AAP had surged the ad funds to Rs 81.23 cr in 2015-16.

As per the norms of the SC, no advertisement by any public or private organisation should be relevant to the governments’ constitutional and legal obligations as well as the citizens’ rights and entitlements.

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