Congress complaints to EC over PM Modi’s Kanyakumari retreat: ‘Tactics to keep himself in the headlines’

  • PM Modi is scheduled to meditate at Rock Memorial, a monument built in tribute to Swami Vivekananda, in Kanyakumari following the culmination of the Lok Sabha polls campaign on May 30, according to BJP leaders.

Written By Sayantani
Updated29 May 2024
Earlier, Prime Minister Narendra Modi visited Rudra meditation cave.
Earlier, Prime Minister Narendra Modi visited Rudra meditation cave.

Congress has lodged a complaint with the Election Commission of India stating that Prime Minister and Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader Narendra Modi's proposed Kanyakumari meditation visit is in violation ‘silence period’ provision of the Model Code of Conduct (MCC) amid the Lok Sabha Elections. 

Modi is scheduled to meditate at Rock Memorial, a monument built in tribute to Swami Vivekananda, in Kanyakumari following the culmination of the Lok Sabha polls campaign on May 30, according to BJP leaders.

‘Silence period’ is used by the ECI to describe a 48-hour period during which political parties and candidates are not allowed to campaign.

Congress in their complaint flagged that the meditation retreat of PM Modi was a violation of the ‘silence period’ in Varanasi that will commence. "The retreat is a “tactic” by the Prime Minister to either keep campaigning or to "keep himself in the headlines," Congress leader Abhishek Manu Singhvi said.

“We have complained that PM Modi has announced that he will sit for 'Maun Vrat' from the evening of May 30... The silence period would be from 7 o'clock on May 30 till June 1. This is a violation of the Model Code of Conduct.” Singhvi added. 

Varanasi will vote on the seventh and last phase of Lok Sabha Elections on June 1. Notably, in 2019, too, Prime Minister Modi had visited the Badrinath and Kedarnath shrines ahead of the declaration of results of that year's Lok Sabha elections, when he got elected to serve a second consecutive term.

What did Congress complain?

“On 28.05.2024, several new agencies reported on a trip that Shri Narendra Modi would be taking to Kanyakumari, where he would undertake 48 hours of meditation at the 29th May 2024 Dhyan Mandapam, starting on 30.05.2024. The said trip would be widely televised and would therefore during the 48 hour silence period in Varanasi, the Constituency from which Shri Narendra Modi is contesting." the Congress complaint read. 

"Through the meditation trip, Shri Narendra Modi is attempting to circumvent 48 hour silence period and unfairly leverage the ethno-cultural significance of the chosen location in an attempt to bolster his campaign and maximize his voteshare…” the complaint added. 

Earlier, West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee said the Trinamool Congress will complain to the Election Commission if PM Modi's meditation in Kanyakumari is televised, claiming that it would be a violation of the election MCC.

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HomeElectionsCongress complaints to EC over PM Modi’s Kanyakumari retreat: ‘Tactics to keep himself in the headlines’

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