Religious propaganda on Sabarimala issue violation of model code of conduct, EC warns

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New Delhi | Published: March 11, 2019 3:57:49 PM

The religious shrine in Kerala was in the eye of the storm over the Supreme Court verdict in September last year over the entry of the women in the Sabarimala temple.

Sabrimala Temple, election commision, lok sabha elections 2019 , kerala, kerala lok sabha election dates Sabrimala Temple (PTI)

With the model code of conduct kicking in soon after the announcement of dates to the Lok Sabha elections 2019, Kerala’s STate Election Commission has wanred political parties against any use of religious propaganda on the Sabarimala Temple issue in their poll campaign.

Just as the doors of Sabrimala Temple reopened for the 11-day monthly pooja, Kerala Chief Electoral Officer T R Meena made it clear that using the Sabrimala Temple for religious propaganda will be seen as a breach of model code of conduct.

“Citing or invoking or doing some sort of religious propaganda based on Sabarimala issue or judgement will be a clear violation of the model code of conduct and we will be taking action,” Meena told news agency ANI.

The religious shrine in Kerala which will close on March 21 was in the middle of a row over the Supreme Court verdict in September last year over the entry of the women in the temple.

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Kerala goes to polls on April 23 in the third of the seven-phase Lok Sabha elections. Kerala sends 20 MPs to the Lok Sabha.

Similarly, up north in Uttar Pradesh, just hours before the model code of conduct for the 2019 Lok Sabha polls came into force, the Uttar Pradesh government on Sunday announced the names of 72 top office bearers in various councils, commissions and corporations, raising many eyebrows.

The Election Commission rolls out a set of guidelines that ensure that elections are free are conducted fairly. As per Article 324 of the Indian Constitution, the Election Commission has full power to monitor the Centre, state governments, the candidates along with their political parties.

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