All India Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (AIADMK) spokesperson R.M. Babu Murugavel has approached the Madras High Court seeking a direction to the Election Commission to restrain Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (DMK) as well as other parties from making speeches associating Chief Minister ‘Edappadi’ K. Palaniswami with the 2017 Kodanad heist-cum-murder.
His writ petition has been listed for hearing before a Division Bench of Justices S. Manikumar and Subramonium Prasad on Monday.
It comes days after City Public Prosecutor Gowri Asokan moved a petition before Justice G.K. Ilanthiraiyan urging the court to directly injunct DMK president M.K. Stalin from linking the Chief Minister’s name with the Kodanad issue.
In fact, though Mr. Murugavel’s main prayer in his writ petition was to direct the EC to dispose of a representation made in this regard by AIADMK on March 22, he included the DMK as well as Mr. Stalin as respondents to his case and sought an interim prayer to restrain them from making public speeches associating the AIADMK party or its leaders with the Kodanad crime.
Code of conduct
Filing an affidavit in support of his writ petition, the party spokesperson, also a former Member of the Assembly representing the constituency in Tiruvannamalai district, said a general advisory issued by the EC to political parties specifically stated that during elections, criticism of other political parties and candidates should be restricted to their policies, programmes, past records and work. It also prohibits criticism of other parties or their workers on the basis of unverified allegations, he said.
He recalled that the High Court had injuncted New Delhi-based journalist Mathew Samuel and a few others, who had made the allegations at the first instance through a video release early this year, from continuing with their tirade.
The petitioner wondered how the DMK leader alone could be allowed to go on repeating the same allegations during his campaign. Though a specific complaint was made in this regard to the EC on the AIADMK letter pad on March 22, no action had been taken so far against the DMK and its leader, the petitioner claimed.