The Election Commission on Monday barred West Bengal Chief Minister and Trinamool Congress leader Mamata Banerjee from campaigning for 24 hours for her remarks against central forces and a statement which had alleged religious overtones.
"Commission hereby condemns such statements potent with serious law and order problems across the state (s) and sternly warns Mamata Banerjee and advises her to desist from using such statements while making public utterances during the period when Model Code of Conduct is in force," the order said.
It said that the "commission also imposes a ban of 24 hours on Ms Mamata Banerjee from campaigning in any manner from 8.00 pm of April 12 till 8.00 pm of April 13."
The West Bengal Chief Minister was accused of making comments that allegedly encouraged voters to revolt against the centra security forces. The ban will continue until 8 pm on Tuesday night.
According to NDTV, the chief minister has already been served two notices by the Election Commission in the last week. In speeches on March 28 and April 7, she allegedly urged women voters to hit back or accost security personnel while also accusing central security of intimidating voters, NDTV reported.
On Monday night, Mamata Banerjee posted on Twitter that she would be protesting the "undemocratic and unconstitional decision of the Election Commission of India" and would sit dharna at Gandhi Murti in Kolkata from noon onwards.
To protest against the undemocratic and unconstitutional decision of the Election Commission of India, I will sit on dharna tomorrow at Gandhi Murti, Kolkata from 12 noon.â€” Mamata Banerjee (@MamataOfficial) April 12, 2021
Assembly elections in West Bengal began on March 27 and four of the eight phases of the polls have been completed. The results will be declared on May 2.
With PTI inputs