Delhi polls: EC asks Twitter to remove Kapil Mishra’s ‘India v Pak’ tweet

Asking why no action should be taken against him, the ECI had also issued a show-cause notice to Mishra.(Express photo: Amit Mehra)

The Election Commission on Friday requested Twitter to take down BJP's Model Town candidate Kapil Mishra's tweet calling February 8 Delhi polls a contest between India and Pakistan.

The officials told PTI that the Election Commission's action came after the office of the Delhi Chief Electoral Officer wrote to the EC to remove the tweet posted by Mishra on Thursday. Asking why no action should be taken against him, the ECI had also issued a show-cause notice to Mishra.

Submitting a reply to the showcause notice, Mishra stated that his comments have been taken out of context and misinterpreted intentionally to paint a one sided picture to stoke differences. "My statement must be seen in the context of Pakistan's attempt at sending their proxies to take undue advantage of a prevailing law an order situation in Delhi. The protesters in Shaheen Bagh are neither in my constituency nor my voters hence my statement will have no impact on them," he said.

Mishra underlined the unrest caused due to protests against the Citizenship (Amendment) Act across the city and said, "I have not named any caste/community/religion or linguistic group, neither have I intended to aggravate any differences to gain any electoral benefit. My statement merely refers to two countries, two entities who are not involved in any election process at a national level at present."

Citing violation of clause 1(1) of the Model Code of Conduct and Section 123(3A) of Representation of People Act, 1951, the Returning Officer asked Mishra to reply to the notice explaining why no action should be taken against him by 12.30 pm today. "In case you failed to give the reply or your reply is unsatisfactory, action against you will be taken without any further notice to you," the notice said.

Mishra, however, stood by his remarks. "I don't think I said anything wrong. Speaking truth is not a crime in this country. I spoke the truth. I stand by my statement," ANI quoted him as saying.

"Roads are encroached upon in Shaheen Bagh, people aren't being allowed to go to schools, offices, hospitals, inciting slogans are being raised. The shamelessness with which Manish Sisodia said he stands with Shaheen Bagh means that this is a political movement," he added.

The EC’s Model Code of Conduct states, “No party or candidate shall include in any activity which may aggravate existing differences or cause tension between different castes and communities, religious or linguistic.”

In a series of tweets on Thursday, Mishra, in reference to the Shaheen Bagh protest against the Citizenship Amendment Act, said, "Pakistan has made its entry in Shaheen Bagh. Many mini Pakistans are being formed in Delhi. Indian law is not being followed in Shaheen Bagh, Chandbagh, Indralok. Pakistani rioters have taken over Delhi’s roads."