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  India   Politics  04 Apr 2024  Congress files complaint against Gadkari for using school children in LS campaign

Congress files complaint against Gadkari for using school children in LS campaign

THE ASIAN AGE. | PRASAD PATIL
Published : Apr 4, 2024, 1:36 am IST
Updated : Apr 4, 2024, 1:36 am IST

Maharashtra Congress spokesperson Atul Londhe has claimed that Mr. Gadkari used school children in his election rally held on Monday

Union Minister and BJP candidate Nitin Gadkari campaigns for the upcoming Lok Sabha elections, in Nagpur, Monday, Apr. 1, 2024. (PTI Photo)
 Union Minister and BJP candidate Nitin Gadkari campaigns for the upcoming Lok Sabha elections, in Nagpur, Monday, Apr. 1, 2024. (PTI Photo)

Mumbai: The Congress has filed a complaint against Union minister Nitin Gadkari and the BJP for the alleged violation of the Model Code of Conduct. It has been alleged that Mr. Gadkari has been using school children for his election campaign and sought “immediate and decisive” action against him.

In a complaint to the Election Commission of India, Maharashtra Congress spokesperson Atul Londhe has claimed that Mr. Gadkair, who is the BJP candidate from the Nagpur Lok Sabha constituency, used school children in his election rally held on Monday. The Congress spokesperson has also attached the photographs and videos of the event along with his complaint letter.

“Despite clear directives from the Election Commission regarding the prohibition of involving children in election-related activities, BJP and Mr. Gadkari have been using school children for their personal campaign. School children from NSVM Fulvari school were used by the BJP and its candidate mr. Gadkari for his campaign rally held between 12 noon and 1 pm on April 1 at Vaidhali Nagar. This blatant disregard for the land and ethical standards is deeply concerning and cannot be overlooked,” Mr. Londhe said in his complaint.

The EC had issued directives to all political parties in February telling them not to use children in political campaigns in any manner including “the distribution of posters/pamphlets, for slogans, campaign rallies, election meetings, or any other election-related activity”.

The Congress leader contended that the use of children in political campaigns not only violates the Child Labour (Prohibition and Regulation) Act, but also goes against the court directives including a 2014 order by the Bombay High Court. “It is evident from the attached video and photographs that the BJP is attempting to influence voters by exploiting children in their campaign. I have provided the necessary evidence (in the form of of photographs and videos),” he said.

Mr. Gadkari is seeking a third term in the Lok Sabha from the Nagpur seat. He defeated seven-term Lok Sabha member and Congress leader Vilas Muttemwar in the 2014 elections by a margin of nearly 2.85 lakh votes. In 2019, his victory margin against Congress’s Nana Patole was 2.15 lakh votes. This time, he has set a target to win the election by over five lakh votes. His election campaign is focused on road shows and door-to-door visits.

 

 

Tags: nitin gadkari, model code of conduct, maharashtra congress, atul londhe
Location: India, Maharashtra