EC asks Twitter, FB to check poll code misuse

EC asks Twitter, FB to check poll code misuse

Election Commission of India office. 

The Election Commission Wednesday urged Twitter and Facebook to ensure provisions of electoral law, which bars display of campaign material in the 'silence period' in the run-up to polls, are followed on their platforms.

The poll panels request to the social media giants comes against the backdrop of Congress president Rahul Gandhi and the BJP reportedly asking voters of Madhya Pradesh and Mizoram on the internet platforms to cast ballot in their favour.

Instead of writing to the two parties, the EC preferred to write to Twitter and Facebook, urging them to ensure that election law is not violated.

"The tweets could be taken out by the company," a senior functionary said on the condition of anonymity.

Section 126 of the Representation of the People Act prohibits the display of any election matter by means of television or similar apparatus, during the period of 48 hours before the hour fixed for conclusion of polls.

Social media does not fall under the ambit of the law.

The EC's director general (communication), Dhirendra Ojha, told reporters here that the letter "has not been written against the backdrop" of the tweets.

He said the two social media majors have been reminded of the provisions of section 126.

A Congress slogan urging people to vote for the party was appended below the two tweets of Gandhi.

BJP Madhya Pradesh had retweeted a tweet by a spokesperson urging people of MP to vote for the party.