EC Issues Notice to Navjot Singh Sidhu For Asking Muslims to Vote For Congress in Bihar During Lok Sabha Elections 2019
File image of Navjot Singh Sidhu | (Photo Credits: IANS)

New Delhi, April 20: The Election Commission on Saturday issued a notice to Punjab Minister Navjot Singh Sidhu for his controversial comments during an election rally in Bihar’s Katihar on April 16. The poll panel asked the Punjab minister to reply within 24 hours. During the rally, Sidhu urged Muslims to vote unitedly to ensure the defeat of Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

The Punjab Minister had appealed the Muslim voters, who form nearly 65 percent of the constituency's electorate, to vote en bloc in favour of Congress in the Lok Sabha elections 2019. A case was also registered against the Congress leader for allegedly violating the model code of conduct (MCC) during the rally.

Sidhu was canvassing in support of veteran Congress leader and former union minister Tariq Anwar when he made the controversial remarks. However, the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) condemned Sidhu’s remarks. BJP state party vice-president Devesh Kumar told PTI, “We strongly condemn the remarks made by Navjot Singh Sidhu. His comments appear to be in sync with the Congress policy of minority appeasement and a consequence of the party's worry of an impending defeat.” EC Issues Censure to Adityanath over 'Modi Ki Sena' Remark.

Recently, the Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) chief Mayawati made similar remarks. Addressing a rally in Saharanpur, Mayawati urged the Muslim community to vote only for the SP-BSP-RLD alliance candidates in the Lok Sabha election in Uttar Pradesh.