In yet another instance of the 'Varun Gandhi-effect', election officials have directed that all public meeting of BJP's firebrand leader Vinay Katiyar, who is contesting from Ambedkarnagar seat, and other saffron leaders campaigning for him be video recorded.
District Magistrate NG Ravi Kumar said that he has asked all sub-divisional magistrates to be careful while giving permission for Katiyar's public meetings and campaign.
"Each move of Katiyar in public during the election process will be recorded on video including all his and other leader's public meetings," said the DM.
Gujrat chief minister Narendra Modi, Gorakhpur MP Yogi Adityanath, VHP leaders Praveen Togadia and Ashok Singhal and RSS chief Mohan Bhagwat are likely to campaign for Katiyar, a prominent leader of the Ayodhya movement.
"Immediate action will be taken and reported to the Election Commission if leaders make any communal speeches," the official said.
The district administration's move comes in the backdrop of the EC ordering filing of FIRs against BJP leader Varun Gandhi for his anti-Muslim speeches. The Commission had ordered suspension of Pilibhit Addition District Magistrate and Additional Superintendent of Police over the issue.
Reacting to the development, Katiyar said that he and his supporters are strictly following the model code of conduct and "so the administration need not be scared of me and my friends".
The district administration does not want a repeat of the Varun Gandhi incident, a senior official of Ambedkarnagar district said on condition of anonymity.
"We have deployed more than a dozen persons armed with video cameras and tape recorders who will be following Katiyar till the day of polling," the official said. "The election commission is strict on such incidents and we don't want to be scapegoats so we are alert".
Following the complaint over Varun's anti-Muslim speeches, the EC had ordered that all his public meeting be videorecorded.
The Kanpur district administration had also directed that public meetings of candidates of prominent parties will be video recorded following the incident.