New Delhi: The Election Commission on Wednesday prohibited the screening of a biopic on Prime Minister Narendra Modi as well as the airing of the hugely controversial NaMo TV during the duration of the general election that begins on Thursday.
In its order on the Modi film, the EC said any such film that subserves the purpose of any political entity or individual should not be displayed in the electronic media. Later, an EC official said that the ban on the film also extends to NaMo TV.
The official referred to a paragraph in the order which said “that any poster or publicity material concerning any such certified content, which either depicts a candidate (including prospective) for the furtherance (or purported to further) of electoral prospects, directly or indirectly, shall not be put on display in the electronic media in the area where MCC (Model Code of Conduct) is in force”.
The commission’s order comes a day before the movie was to be released and on the eve of the first phase of elections, where 91 constituencies go to the polls.
The EC order also follows the Supreme Court dismissing a petition on Tuesday filed by a Congress activist which sought a stay on the release of the biopic.The court had said the Election Commission would be an “appropriate” place to seek redressal.
The plea by the Congress activist had sought deferment of the biopic’s relea-se till the completion of the Lok Sabha polls, alleging that it was designed to “manipulate, influence and impress viewers and voters”.
Reacting to the EC order on Wednesday, the Congr-ess said the commission’s order staying the crass publicity gimmick thro-ugh “Modi Biopic” was a promising step in upholding and ensuring a “level playing field” in the ongoing elections. The Prime Minister’s quest for “I, Me, Myself” through “NaMo TV” was also a boorish attempt at self-promotion.
Both “NaMo TV” and the Modi Biopic were nothing more than a flagrant misuse of money power by an arrogant ruler facing imminent defeat, Congress chief spokesperson Randeep Surjewala said.
He further said that the Election Commission’s decision staying the “Modi Biopic” was an affirmation that none less than the Prime Minister of India was complicit in violating the Model Code of Conduct.