The Congress has approached the Election Commission against the hoardings that appeared in different parts of the Kannur Lok Sabha constituency with the photographs of Communist Party of India (Marxist) and sitting MP P.K. Sreemathy who is seeking re-election from the constituency.
Congress leaders, who were present at the meeting convened by District Collector and District Election Officer Mir Mohammed Ali here on Tuesday on compliance with model code of conduct, raised the issue and said the hoardings had no ownership and violated the green protocol.
District Congress Committee president Satheeshan Pacheni told the meeting that there was a standing instruction to political parties not to use flex boards for the campaign. No action was taken against the boards that featured Ms. Sreemathy’s ‘achievements’ during her tenure as MP.
While CPI(M) leaders present at the meeting said that boards were not made of flex material and that they had been erected by organisations enamoured by Ms. Sreemathy’s developmental initiatives, the Congress demanded that the boards be removed immediately.
Model code of conduct
The Collector said that all parties should ensure that the model code of conduct was not violated. The code was also applicable to election campaign via social media. The parties should inform the EC social media campaign expenditure, he said adding that social media messages would be under the scrutiny of the EC. As per the EC’s direction, candidates should inform through print media and TV channels of the criminal cases they were facing, he added.
Mr. Ali also told political leaders that action would be initiated immediately on complaints with evidence about partiality or dereliction of election duty by officials. As voter verifiable paper audit trail (VVPAT) is using for the first time in the election, party leaders should be aware of its functioning, he said.
Among the leaders present at the meeting were N. Chandran (CPI-M), C.P Murali (CPI), C.H. Prakashan (NCP), K. Radhakrishnan (BJP), Abdul Kareen Cheleri (IUML), Johnson P. Thomas (RSP) and M. Unnikrishnan (Congress-S), Additional District Magistrate E. Muhammad Yusaf and Deputy Collector (Elelction) A.K. Ramendran were also present.