SEC reserves order on Congress manifesto

Bhubaneswar: The State Election Commission today reserved its verdict on the Congress manifesto issue. The SEC had issued notices to both the Congress and the BJD which had raised objections to certain sections of the manifesto.

The SEC today heard arguments of leaders of both the Congress and the BJD. The BJD Lok Sabha member Pinaki Mishra argued that the SEC should ask the Congress to withdraw the manifesto. Pinaki argued that the manifesto violated the election codes. "The election code strictly entails that no unsubstantiated facts should not be published against any opponent. But the Congress has done it,"argued Pinaki. The BJD was represented by Pinaki Mishra, Sashi Bhushan Behera and party general secretary Narendra Swain.

The Congress however stuck to its ground and saw nothing in wrong in printing certain allegations against BJD leaders. Said Shivanand, PCC vice-president,"There was nothing wrong in publishing the allegations and it did not amount to violation of code of conduct." Shivanand and three other advocates represented the Congress. The SEC heard the two sides for over one and half hour. The SEC has reserved its verdict.