EC Imposes Campaign Ban for Violation of Modal Code of Conduct

Four Leaders namely Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath, BSP leader Mayawati, SP leader Azam Khan and Union minister Maneka Gandhi faces ban from campaigning for their hate comments.

This is the first time an all-India ban has been imposed on politicians to campaign in elections and also it is for the first time such a restriction has been put against a chief minister.

About Modal Code of Conduct (MCC)

The Model Code of Conduct (MCC) is a document from the Election Commission of India in which it lays down the minimum standards of behavior for political parties and their candidates contesting elections. The MCC comes into effect as soon as the EC announces the election schedule.

Things to Remember

The MCC was first proposed by Kerala in its 1960 assembly elections. It was later adopted by the Election Commission of India (EC) during mid-term elections in 1968 and 1969.

  • Under ‘general conduct’ the Code mainly regulates the candidates who incite communal tensions, use caste or religion to appeal for votes.
  • For meetings and processions, parties are required to obtain advance permissions from local authorities and seek police help to contain unruly elements.
  • Effigy burning is expressly prohibited.
  • On the day of election, political parties are expected to identify their party workers with badges and away from the polling booths.
  • Refrain from distributing goodies or liquor to voters
  • Election manifestos of political parties should not contain any unreasonable and impractical promises. EC directs parties to stick only to those promises that are financially feasible.
  • The Code ensures that the party in power does not gain an unfair advantage in campaigning; ministers are barred from mixing their official visits with political rallies.
  • Ruling party does not use government vehicles, aircraft or machinery and it can not issue public advertisements promoting the party or its leaders at the cost of the exchequer.
  • Once elections are announced, ministers cannot announce financial grants or large projects or make ad-hoc government appointments in a way that could influence voter behaviour.

Besides acquiring great significance it is not legally binding to the politicians as it does not have any statutory backing and this ban has been imposed by Election Commission under Article 324 of Indian constitution.

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