GUWAHATI, April 8 - With campaigning for the general elections gathering momentum, almost all the major political parties are violating the model code of conduct issued by the Election Commission (EC) as instead of criticizing the policies and programmes of the parties, the political leaders have started launching personal attacks against their opponents.
There have been instances where the political leaders made scathing comments on names and ages of opponents in public meetings in violation of the model code of conduct. Interestingly, the major parties, Congress and the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) have levelled personal attacks on the candidates.
The model code of conduct issued by the EC clearly states, �Criticism of political parties must be limited to their policies and programmes, past record and work. �Activities such as using caste and communal feelings to secure votes,� criticizing candidates on the basis of unverified reports, bribing or intimidation of voters, and organizing demonstrations or picketing outside houses of persons to protest against their opinions, are prohibited.� But unfortunately, all these points are blatantly violated by parties in the election meetings.
When asked to comment on the issue, Assam Pradesh Congress Committee (APCC) president Ripun Bora alleged that it was the BJP, which was making personal attacks on Congress leaders and candidates in the election campaigns. He pointed out that some BJP leaders made �very indecent� personal attacks against the candidates of the Congress using �unparliamentary� words and admitted that it is not a healthy sign for democracy. He alleged that a few star campaigners of the BJP even resorted to character assassination of the Congress candidates.
When asked why the Congress did not file complaints on the issue before the EC, Bora said that the people of the State have seen such behaviour of a section of the BJP leaders and it is best left to the voters to decide on the issue. He also alleged that filing a complaint before the EC on the issue would not yield any desired result.
On the other hand, the BJP also accused the Congress of violating the model code of conduct during campaigning. State BJP spokesman Rupam Goswami alleged that it was the Congress, which started personal attacks on political leaders with the slogan chowkidar chor hai to launch a personal attack on Prime Minister Narendra Modi. He said, � the Congress has no issues against the BJP as the Government at the Centre headed by Narendra Modi checked corruption and brought the administrative system back in place for the all round development of the nation. That is why, the Congress was forced to launch personal attacks against Modi and other senior leaders of the BJP.� He also said that instead of targeting the Prime Minister, the opposition should have tried to highlight the failures of the Government, if any, and let the people decide.