The AAP volunteers, according to the MCMC, were found distributing the newspaper, Aap Ki Kranti, in Gurgaon and Mewat.
The District Media Certification & Monitoring Committee (MCMC) has found the Aam Aadmi Party leader, Yogendra Yadav, guilty of violation of the model code of conduct for publishing and distributing a newspaper without disclosing it to the authorities and adding the publication cost to his election expenditure.
The AAP volunteers, according to the MCMC, were found distributing the newspaper, Aap Ki Kranti, in Gurgaon and Mewat featuring a survey which showed the AAP having an edge over other candidates in the fray from the Gurgaon parliamentary constituency.
It also carried interviews of the party’s national convenor Arvind Kejriwal and Mr. Yadav.
Considering it a violation of the model code of conduct, a notice was served to Mr. Yadav by the MCMC on April 7 and the AAP candidate was asked to furnish reply within 48 hours. Mr. Yadav, in his reply on April 9, contended that the said publication was not a newspaper and just a pamphlet meant for distribution among party volunteers.
Not satisfied with the reply, the committee has decided to add the cost of the newspaper into the election expenditure of the AAP candidate. Calculating the cost incurred on publication at Rs.3 per copy, the committee has added Rs.1.5 lakh into the election expenditure of Mr. Yadav for 50,000 copies.
Deputy Commissioner Shekhar Vidyarthi, who is also the Chairman of the committee, has also ordered probe by the Assistant Returning Officers concerned to find whether the newspaper was unregistered or not and directed him to take action accordingly.
As per Section 15 of Press and Registration of Books Act, 1867, any person who prints or publishes a newspaper without confirming to the rules may be punished with fine not exceeding Rs.2,000 or imprisonment for a term not exceeding six months or both.