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Election Commission orders Congress to file its annual audit report within 30 days

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By NewsGram Staff Writer

Election Commission has ordered Congress to file their annual audit report within 30 days. The poll panel wrote a letter to the party in response to Congress’ objection to its transparency guidelines requiring parties to file their annual audit reports with the commission.

As reported by a national daily, the Election Commission wrote to the Congress on June 9 underlining its powers under Article 324(1) of the Constitution to issue instructions to deal with situations not covered by enacted laws and rules, and directed the grand old party to file a copy of its annual audit report for 2013-14 within 30 days of receipt of its letter.

A few days back, EC had suspended the recognition of P.A. Sangma’s National People’s Party for not filing its expenditure statement for 2014 Lok Sabha polls.

According to a report by a leading English daily, a senior commission official indicated that the Congress could face a fate similar to National People’s Party in case it failed to abide by its instructions.

Reportedly, 4 national parties and 28 state parties have already submitted their annual audit reports for 2013- 14 and others are expected to do so after recently being reminded for the third time by EC.

Apart from Congress, even BJP is yet to file its audited annual accounts. However unlike Congress, it hasn’t challenged commission’s transparency guidelines.

Congress, reportedly, had sent a letter to EC on May 15 arguing that the party was already filing its annual audit report along with income tax returns. Section 29C of the RP Act only required parties to submit their annual contribution reports in respect of contributions in excess of Rs 20,000, and there was no requirement to furnish an annual audit report.

“The guidelines issued by the commission cannot override statutory provision…such guidelines are not legally enforceable nor can be implemented until and unless amendment is carried out in the principal Act (RP Act),” said the Congress.

In response to this letter, EC referred to a 1978 Supreme Court verdict in M S Gill Vs the Chief Election Commissioner, underlining that Article 324(1) gave EC residuary powers “in the infinite variety of situations that may emerge from time to time in a large democracy as ours”.

Reportedly it also referred to a 2002 judgment of the SC in Union of India Vs ADR, which said that EC’s jurisdiction is wide enough to include all powers necessary for smooth conduct of elections.

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Modi is anti-Dalit, will defeat BJP in 2019: Rahul Gandhi

Gandhi also accused the government of suppressing and intimidating the media

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Rahul Gandhi becomes president of Congress as mother Sonia Gandhi steps down
Rahul Gandhi steps in as President of Congress, Wikipedia

Congress President Rahul Gandhi on Monday accused Prime Minister Narendra Modi and his government of being anti-Dalit and said his party will defeat the BJP in 2019 Lok Sabha elections. Gandhi, who led his party’s day-long fast at Rajghat to highlight atrocities against Dalits and other communities, said party workers were protesting against an ideology, a way of thinking.

Rahul Gandhi becomes the president of Congress as mother Sonia Gandhi Steps Down
Rahul Gandhi is against Modi and his rule.

“The atmosphere that has been created in the country, it is due to the ideology of the BJP. BJP’s ideology is to divide the country, crush the Dalits, tribals, minorities. We are against the ideology of the BJP. We are standing against it today, we will stand against it throughout our lives. And we will defeat them in the 2019 elections,” Gandhi told reporters.

Asked about BJP Dalit MPs writing to Modi with their complaints, Gandhi said: “You talk to them in Parliament. They also tell us that Modiji is a casteist person, an anti-Dalit person. He has no place for Dalits in his heart, the whole country knows this. It is not a secret.”

Also Read: A voice of his own: Rahul Gandhi tries to impress Lok Sabha with his speech

Gandhi attacked BJP President Amit Shah for likening the coming together of opposition parties to “snakes, mongoose, dogs and cats” climbing a tree trunk to save themselves from floods. He said every person in the country was against the BJP.

“Some days back a BJP leader said that opposition members were animals. The truth is that today every person in the country is standing against the government. The approach that this government has against Dalits, tribals, minorities and farmers, we are standing against it,” he said. Gandhi said the country will not accept that Modi government “spreads violence, hatred in the country… We are standing here against this ideology.”

Raul Maino
Rahul Gandhi says Modi controls the Media. Twitter

Gandhi also accused the government of suppressing and intimidating the media. “You are standing on the other side but in actuality you are standing on our side as we are protecting you also. You are smiling, I know. We are fighting for you as well.” IANS

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