Modi's Alleged Poll Code Breach: Police to File ATR in 3 Weeks

Modi's Alleged Poll Code Breach: Police to File ATR in 3 Weeks

A local court today granted three weeks time to police to file an 'action taken report' in connection with an FIR against Prime Minister Narendra Modi for allegedly violating Representation of People Act on April 30 when Gujarat went to Lok Sabha polls.

Additional Chief Judicial Magistrate (ACJM) M M Sheikh of Ahmedabad rural court passed the order on the application filed by Gujarat Police's Detection of Crime Branch (DCB) seeking 15-day time to submit the action taken report (ATR).

The court granted three weeks to the probing agency to submit the report on or before August 26, the next date of hearing.

The plea was filed by Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) worker Nishant Verma who had claimed that he filed an application before the state police seeking action against Modi for showing party symbol on the poll day but they had lodged an incomplete FIR.

On April 30 this year, when the voting was underway on the 26 Lok Sabha seats of Gujarat, Modi had addressed a press conference immediately after stepping out of the polling booth where he cast his vote in Ranip area of the city and displayed his party's symbol lotus.

On the directives of the Election Commission, the crime branch had lodged an FIR against Modi on April 30 under section 126(1)(a) of RP Act, for holding public meeting, and under section 188 of IPC, for violating election notification.

As per the section 126(1)(a), there is a prohibition of public meetings during period of 48 hours ending with hour fixed for conclusion of poll.

Earlier, the court, while acting upon Verma's plea, had asked the DCB to submit the ATR on or before August 5.

Verma, in his complaint, had demanded that Modi should also be charged under sections section 130 of RP Act and IPC sections 114, 171 (c) and (f).

According to section 130 of the RP Act, a person is prohibited from canvassing for votes or exhibiting any notice or signs relating to the election within the polling station on the day of polling while IPC section 114 stands for the role of an abettor present when the offence is committed.

Section 171(c) fixes the culpability of a person whoever voluntarily interferes or attempts to interfere with the free exercise of any electoral right commits the offence of undue influence at an election.

Besides, section 171(f) ensures that the offender shall be punished with imprisonment of either description for a term which may extend to one year or with fine, or with both.

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