Hyderabad: The Election Commission of India (ECI) on Saturday, imposed a 2-day ban on Telangana energy minister G Jagdish Reddy from campaigning in Munugode.
The ban was imposed for violating the poll code as Reddy allegedly threatened to halt the welfare scheme if people did not vote for Telangana Rashtra Samithi (TRS) in the upcoming by-polls. The ECI wasn’t convinced by Reddy’s explanation regarding the issue.
In its notice, the ECI said, “The tone and tenor of the speech made by the minister is in the nature of intimidation of voters and thus is a violation of the provisions of model code of conduct and censures him for the said violation.”
On October 25, In his speech in Munugode, Reddy allegedly said that the by-election was not a contest between TRS candidate Kusukuntla Prabhakar Reddy and Bhartiya Janata Party’s (BJP) Komatireddy Rajgopal Reddy. Rather it was a test of the people, if they want the welfare schemes or not.
In his reply to the ECI notice, the minister said, “It was only an attempt by me to explain the welfare schemes being extended by the state government. My statement does not fall under the definition of corrupt practices.” He further claimed to have addressed the gathering in Munugode in Telugu and stated that the complaint filed by BJP’s K Dileep Kumar was false.