Mayawati accuses Election Commission of favouring opposition (Lead)

April 8th, 2009 - 3:46 pm ICT by IANS  

Bahujan Samaj Party Lucknow, April 8 (IANS) Chief Minister Mayawati Wednesday accused the Election Commission of being biased towards opposition parties in Uttar Pradesh, reacting sharply to the poll panel’s order to remove the state’s principal home secretary.
Addressing a hurriedly convened press conference just before flying off to Maharashtra for her election campaign, Mayawati said: “Removal of the state’s principal home secretary Fateh Bahadur was arbitrary and has apparently been done simply on the basis of flimsy, false and one-sided complaints made by some opposition parties.”

Mayawati, who is chief of the ruling Bahujan Samaj Party, said: “The least that the Election Commission should have done is to authenticate these complaints before ordering such a drastic step.”

“In the past also, the poll panel went about ordering the removal of some district magistrates and superintendents of police, besides some lower officials without verifying facts, which is not being fair to the state government.”

She alleged that many new appointments were “made directly by the commission without even seeking a panel from the state government”.

“The Uttar Pradesh government is committed to strictly adhering to the norms and rules laid down by the Election Commission and I have also issued firm directives not only to my officials but also to party candidates and workers not to allow the slightest violation of the Election Commission’s model code of conduct.”

“I would like to make an humble appeal to the Election Commission to point out any violation in the code of conduct or in the guidelines given by it. I can assure them that corrective action would be taken promptly by the state government, but it should not be guided by baseless and false complaints made by the opposition.”

She warned: “If the commission continues with such arbitrary practices, then let me tell them that the state government will not be responsible for any untoward incidents like a terrorist strike, a communal flare-up or any other breakdown of law and order, including mishaps with some candidate.”

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