ibnlive » Politics

Mar 23, 2009 at 09:08pm IST

BJP backs Varun, asks EC to not advise

New Delhi: In his second reply to the Election Commission (EC), BJP's Varun Gandhi has accused the poll panel of leaking the order to the media and not giving him a fair opportunity to defend himself.

The EC, acting upon Varun's hate speech, had recommended to the BJP not to field him from Pilibhit in Uttar Pradesh.

Varun has alleged that the EC had passed the order in haste with utter disregard for the principles of natural justice. Varun also says there are several candidates against whom cases pertaining to riots of 1984 were pending - alluding to Congress' Sajjan Kumar and Jagdish Tytler - but that the EC chose to stay silent on them.

THE OTHER GANDHI: Varun had allegedly made a hate speech against Muslims in his constituency, Pilibhit.

The BJP too, meanwhile, is on the offensive. Party Spokesperson Balbir Punj has said the Election Commision didn't even bother to authenticate the CD - which contains the alleged hate speech made by Varun Gandhi in his constituency - before issuing its recommendation.

The BJP on Monday rejected the Election Commission's advise to it not not to nominate Varun Gandhi as candidate in the Lok Sabha elections and declared that he would be the party candidate in Pilibhit.

"He (Varun) is our candidate. We have turned down the advise (by the EC) because it is does not have the right to give such an advise," Balbir Punj told reporters after meeting Varun.

He said he was speaking as the authorised spokesman of the party and that it was the view of the party leaders after consultations among them.

Varun Gandhi is the BJP candidate in Pilibhit. "What I am telling you is the outcome of the consultations among the BJP leaders. We have turned down the decision of the EC. It has no right to give such an advice. This is the considered stand of the BJP and I am speaking as the authorised spokesman of the party," said Punj.

“Whether the CD of Varun Gandhi's speeches is doctored or not is not for any "ordinary" person to decide on. How did it decide on the genuineness of the CD?” he asked.