Pawar gets EC stick on 'ink remark'

Pawar gets EC stick on 'ink remark'

The Election Commission has issued notice to Union Agriculture Minister and Nationalist Congress Party leader Sharad Pawar asking him to explain why he had purportedly advised voters at Vashi in Navi Mumbai to erase the ink marks on their fingers in order to vote twice.

The EC, which has received a complaint from the Bharatiya Janata Party, conveyed to Pawar that it was prima facie of the opinion that he had violated the Model Code of Conduct by asking the voters to vote twice. The poll panel has given Pawar till March 26 to explain his stand.

“One good thing has happened. In last elections, there was one problem. Elections in Satara and Mumbai were on the same day. Families went to their villages. This time, election in Satara is on 17 and as per my information, election here is on 24. So cast your vote on (the) ‘clock’ there and also cast your vote on ‘clock’ here….Wipe the ink, wipe the first ink,” the BJP quoted Pawar as saying in the letter to the poll panel.

Kirit Somaiya of the BJP lodged a complaint with the EC and submitted recording of the controversial remark by the NCP supremo.

Pawar, however, said that he had made the statement in “a lighter vein”.

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