Varun Gandhi replies to EC, BJP disowns his speech

Varun Gandhi replies to EC, BJP disowns his speech
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First Published: Fri, Mar 20 2009. 06 10 PM IST
Updated: Fri, Mar 20 2009. 06 10 PM IST
New Delhi: Bharatiya Janata Party or BJP’s Pilibhit candidate Varun Gandhi, who has allegedly made communally inflammatory remarks during his election campaign, filed his reply before the Election Commission or EC on Friday even as his party distanced from the content of his controversial speech. According to people close to Gandhi, his lawyers reiterated that the CDs of the speech have been doctored and it was not his speech.
Meanwhile, the 29-year-old son of BJP MP Maneka Gandhi and grandson of late prime minister Indira Gandhi, has been granted an anticipatory bail from Delhi High Court. Denying that he made any inflammatory speech, Gandhi has said the voice heard in the CD was not his.
In its reply to the EC, the BJP stated that Gandhi’s remarks did not represent the views of the party. “The BJP categorically states that it completely disagrees, disassociates and disapproves the contents of the CD as sent to us,” party leader R Ramakrishna said in his single page reply to an EC notice. The EC had issued a notice to BJP and Gandhi, on the alleged anti-Muslim speeches made by him early this month. The party asked the EC to check the genuineness of the CD. According to Chief Election Commissioner N Gopalaswami, the onus of proving that the video CD - containing the inflammatory hate speech - was tampered with rests with Varun himself.
The ruling Congress warned that the poll panel should be sending a wrong message to the other candidates if it does not take action against such personalities.
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First Published: Fri, Mar 20 2009. 06 10 PM IST