A day after terming as “absurd” the charge by Union Home Minister P. Chidambaram that West Bengal was the worst –governed State, the Communist Party of India (Marxist) on Wednesday petitioned the Election Commission of India (EC) stating that the campaign was violating the model code of conduct.
After meeting Chief Election Commissioner S.Y. Quraishi, CPI(M) politburo leader Sitaram Yechury said the party told the EC that while campaigning in the State, Mr. Chidambaram and his Ministry were attempting to portray the Left as “an aggressor” and “selectively leaking” data regarding political killings in the State.
Saying that such statements during Assembly elections were tantamount to influencing the voters, Mr. Yechury sought action to be taken against the Ministry for violation of the code. He cited media reports quoting Home Ministry officials, claiming that at least 24 people, half of them belonging to the Trinamool Congress, were killed in the State in poll-related violence, since these occurred after election process began last month.
While emphasising that selective quoting of data was in violation of the code, he said that as per data collected by the party, 380 workers of the Left Front were killed since the 2009 Lok Sabha elections allegedly by the Trinamool Congress and Maoists.
The petition is the latest in a series of complaints the CPI(M)-led Left Front has submitted to the EC. Earlier, it submitted papers charging that the Trinamool was using unaccounted money.
Raising apprehensions about violence by the Opposition in the State during the remaining three phases of polling, the party sought the Commission's intervention.