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EC issues stern warning over hate speeches


New Delhi: Warning political leaders against making hate speeches, the Election Commission today said there will be strict and “ruthless” enforcement of the Model Code of Conduct during Delhi polls and it will have zero tolerance against such occurrences.

“Any statement made before the Model Code is one thing. Any statement made after the enforcement of the Model Code is another…there cannot be any advance ruling on the issue. Ruling can be made when it happens…there will be strict and ruthless enforcement of the code,” Chief Election Commissioner V S Sampath told a press conference here.

He was responding to a volley of questions on hate speeches and re-conversion programmes like ‘ghar wapsi’.

Responding to a similar question, he said the poll watchdog has “zero tolerance” against prohibited activities or speeches during the conduct of polls.

During the Lok Sabha polls earlier this year, EC had banned rallies of BJP chief Amit Shah and UP minister Mohd Azam Khan for allegedly making inflammatory speeches.

While ban on Shah was lifted after he approached the Commission, ban on Khan had remained as he did not clarify his stand before the poll body.

Union Minister Sadhvi Niranjan Jyoti had recently stoked a controversy by allegedly making an inflammatory speech and using an expletive in an election rally here, drawing severe flak from opposition which accused BJP of pursuing divisive politics and demanded that she be sacked.

Parliament, during the recently-concluded Winter session, had witnessed several adjournments on the issue.

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