The Election Commission of India has come down hard on BJP leader Giriraj Singh for his communal speech made during his election campaign. The EC has now not only condemned the impugned statements but also censured Singh.
In its order dated May 12, the EC "condemns the impugned statements made by him during election campaign held at Begusarai and censures Sh. Giriraj Singh, leader Bharatiya Janata Party and contesting candidate from 24-Begusarai Parliamentary Constituency..." and also "strictly warns Sh Giriraj Singh to remain careful in his public utterances during the currency of the Model Code of Conduct."
Singh appears to be a habitual hate offender and has previously made several controversial statements about Muslims, former INC president Sonia Gandhi and asked people who are not comfortable with PM Narendra Modi's leadership to go to Pakistan.
Thsi time, Singh is the BJP's candidate from Begusarai in Bihar and on April 24 while addressing s gathering at GD College, Singh had made a controversial comment about chanting Vande Mataram and burial space for Muslims. Roughly translated from Hindi his comment was as follows: "Those who cannot say Vande Mataram or cannot respect the motherland, the nation will never forgive them. My ancestors died at the Simaria Ghat and did not need a grave but you need three handspans of space."
The EC found that Singh's "public utterances" in the matter "contaminate the electoral process" and went on to rule that Singh "made a statement on religious lines that tantamounts to violation of provisions of para 3 and para 4 of Part 1 General Conduct" of the Election Model Code of Conduct. These provisions are as follows:
Para 3) There shall be no appeal to caste or communal feelings for securing votes. Mosques, Churches, Temples or other places of worship shall not be used as forum for election propaganda.
Para 4) All parties and candidates shall avoid scrupulously all activities which are “corrupt practices” and offences under the election law, such as bribing of voters, intimidation of voters, impersonation of voters, canvassing within 100 meters of polling stations, holding public meetings during the period of 48 hours ending with the hour fixed for the close of the poll, and the transport and conveyance of voters to and from polling station.
The entire order may be read here: