Mamata Banerjee Protests Against EC’s Campaign Ban

The ban comes into force ahead of the fifth phase of Assembly polls in the state on April 17

Kolkata: West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee is sitting on dharna at Gandhi Murti in Kolkata on Tuesday, as a mark of protest after the Election Commission (EC) imposed a ban on her for 24 hours from campaigning in any manner from 8 pm on April 12 till 8 pm on April 13.

While sitting on the dharna she is keeping herself busy by painting.

The Election Commission on Monday banned Mamata Banerjee from campaigning in the ongoing state elections for 24 hours and said she had made “highly insinuating and provocative remarks laden with the serious potential of the breakdown of law and order and thereby affecting the election process”.

The ban comes into force ahead of the fifth phase of Assembly polls in the state on April 17.

The poll panel in its order condemned her statements “portent with serious law and order problems across the state (s)” and sternly warned her.

It advised her “to desist from using such statements while making public utterances during the period when Model Code of Conduct is in force.” Following this, Trinamool Congress MP Derek O’Brien called the EC’s move a ‘black day for democracy’.

“Today is a black day in Indian democracy. They can not beat us, that is why they ban us,” tweeted O’Brien. He further remarked that the EC stands for ‘Extremely Compromised’.

Leaders from different political parties also reacted strongly against EC’s move to ban Mamata Banerjee from campaigning for 24 hours in the ongoing Assembly elections over her appeal for votes along communal lines.

Abhijit Banerjee, son of former President Pranab Mukherjee and Congress leader, said, “Banning Mamata Banerjee from campaigning for the next 24 hours while ignoring hate speeches of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leaders is nothing but a naked display of favouritism by the Chief Election Commissioner Sunil Arora.” Banerjee further questioned if there was any deal between Arora and the BJP.

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