Assam Minister threatening BPF, Congress tells poll panel

The Congress on Tuesday complained to the Election Commission that Assam Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma was “threatening” to get leaders of its alliance partner, the Bodoland People’s Front, arrested by the NIA.

A Congress delegation led by party leaders Rajiv Shukla and Devadatt Kamat met the poll panel over the issue.

Addressing media after the meeting, Kamat said that the Election Commission heard them on “two important issues”.

“The issue which was brought to notice of the Commission was that state Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma has been openly intimidating and threatening the Congress’ alliance partner, the Bodoland People’s Front, by saying that they will get its leaders arrested through the NIA.

“This is openly seeking the help of central investigative agencies, in the ongoing Assam Assembly elections, which is again totally prohibited and it is an offense under the IPC and also under the Representation of the People Act,” he said.

The Congress said it had also raised the issue telecast and printing of certain advertisements just after the first phase of elections on Sunday in which the BJP sought to portray that they are winning all the seats in upper Assam.

“This is totally illegal and contrary to Section 126 of the Representation of the People Act, as also the Election Commission’s own circular which prohibits dissemination of any prediction even by third parties, astrologers, tarot readers and by political analysts.

“But in this case, a political party, BJP is seeking to disseminate the result, predict the result, which is in total violation,” Shukla said.

He said that the Election Commission assured them that they have called for a report from their observers on the ground in Assam and act accordingly.