The Election Commission of India has imposed a ban on BJP leader Rahul Sinha from campaigning in any manner for next 48 hours. The ban will come into effect from today itself and remain in place till April 15 afternoon.
The ECI's action against Sinha came over his remarks on Sitalkuchi, Cooch Behar violence. The poll body had on Saturday imposed a 72-hour ban on politicians of all parties from entering Cooch Behar following a firing incident at a polling booth that killed four people. The firing took place after locals allegedly attacked CISF personnel and "attempted to snatch their rifles" due to a "misunderstanding" at polling booth no. 126 in Sitalkuchi, the poll panel said in a statement.
"Commission hereby strongly condemns the above statements made by Rahul Sinha, BJP, and sternly warns him to be careful from using such statements while making public utterances during the period when Model Code of Conduct is in force," according to an order.
The commission also enhanced the "silence period" from 48 hours to 72 hours for the fifth phase of the West Bengal Assembly election. Polling for the fifth phase will be held on April 17.
Meanwhile, the Election Commission has issued a notice to West Bengal BJP president Dilip Ghosh for his alleged remarks that there would be "Sitalkuchi in several places". He has been asked to respond to the notice and make his stand clear on his remarks by Wednesday morning.