The Election Commission is likely to pronounce its order on the complaint of alleged violation of the model code of conduct by Union Law and Justice Minister Salman Khursheed soon, as both the lawyers representing the Congress and the Bharatiya Janata Party concluded their arguments here on Friday.
The Commission, comprising Chief Election Commissioner S.Y. Quraishi and Election Commissioners V.S. Sampath and H.S. Brahma, heard the argument of BJP Rajya Sabha MP and senior advocate Ravi Shankar Prasad, who maintained that Mr. Khursheed indeed violated the code by promising a sub-quota of nine per cent for minorities in Uttar Pradesh out of 27% reservation in jobs and educational institutions for the Other Backward Classes.
Mr. Prasad said Mr. Khursheed was not only the Law Minister but was also in charge of the Minority Affairs department and the announcement, which he was entitled to make during the non-poll period, had been made only with the intent of garnering Muslim votes and appeasing the minorities. He refuted the contention of the Congress that the promise was made by Mr. Khursheed as a Congress leader.
He alleged that the Minister had made such an announcement as the promise was not mentioned in the Congress manifesto or the declared policy of the Congress.
Congress MP and senior advocate Abishek Manu Singhvi, appearing for Mr. Khursheed, reiterated his argument that the latter's speech at an election rally at Farrukhabad in Uttar Pradesh on January 8 was just a proactive one and a repetition of what the Congress intended to do for the minorities.