Friday, August 22, 2014

Modi's poll selfie - Court accepts closure report

The magisterial court on Friday accepted the closure report filed by the city crime branch in the selfie case of Prime Minister Narendra Modi. The complainant in this case, inspector H A Rathod, had earlier told the court that he did not have any objection to the clean chit given to Modi by the crime branch.

Additional metropolitan magistrate M H Patel allowed the crime branch to close the case after accepting the conclusions arrived at by the investigators that the media briefing that took place on the day of general elections was not a "meeting" at all. It accepted the statements of media persons and BJP leaders that the briefing took place at the request of media persons and it was impromptu and not a pre-arranged press conference or public meeting.

Besides, the court accepted the crime branch's version that Modi took selfie with BJP symbol lotus, but it was a white lotus. "The tone, tenor and language used by Modi in the media interaction and the display of white lotus symbol by him do not come within the ambit of display of election matter as envisaged under section 126(1)A and 126(1)B of the Representation of People Act," the court said.

On scrutiny of statements by media persons, police and security personnel and BJP leaders present on the spot, along with the documents, the court found that Modi was not even within the 100 metre prohibited area of the polling booth. Thus, there was no violation of section 188 of the IPC.

The complaints against Modi and unknown media persons were filed by the crime branch inspector Rathod at the instance of the Election Commission of India.

Meanwhile, another magisterial court in Mirzapur has also asked the crime branch to submit a report on this issue in response to a former Aam Aadmi Party member, Nishant Varma.

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