Hate speech: EC to issue notice to Cong's Shankersinh Vaghela

The Election Commission decided today to issue a notice to Congress leader Shankersinh Vaghela for allegedly making hate speeches while campaigning in poll-bound Gujarat.

The Commission, in its meeting chaired by Chief Election Commissioner V S Sampath, decided to issue the notice after prima facie finding that Vaghela had violated the Model Code of Conduct by making speeches in Surat that made references to the post-Godhra violence.

The EC is preparing the notice and the same is likely to be issued to him by evening.
The Commission's decision to issue the notice came after it received complaints against Vaghela, following which the Chief Electoral Officer, Gujarat, and the District Electoral Officer, Surat, gave their reports.

It had also received video-recording and transcripts of the speeches and those were seen before issuing the notice.

Vaghela had on October 31 made speeches at the BRC gate ground in Surat where he made references to the Godhra incident and recollected the post-Godhra killings in a bid to woo the Muslim votebank.

The former Gujarat chief minister is reported to have reminded the voters about the post-Godhra violence and charged the Modi-led Gujarat government of having orchestrated them in his speeches.

Vaghela, who has earlier been with the BJP before switching his loyalty to the Congress, is also the chairman of Indian Tourism Development Corporation (ITDC).

Gujarat will go to polls in two phases on December 13 and 17. The counting of votes will take place on December 20.

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