Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) IT-cell head Amit Malviya on Tuesday got embroiled in a controversy after he reportedly revealed the polling and counting dates for Karnataka Assembly elections even before the Election Commission. It is another matter that the counting date posted by Malviya turned out to be incorrect.
Malviya tweeted May 12 and May 18 as the dates for polling and counting, respectively. The official dates as declared by the EC later are May 12 and May 15.
After the issue was raised with Chief Election Commissioner OP Rawat by journalists, Malviya deleted the tweet.
When Malviya was asked by a senior journalist on Twitter, how he had access to the dates before the EC announcement, Malviya said a news channel flashed the dates and they were already public.
On how BJP’s IT Cell head Amit Malviya had the dates of Karnataka elections on social media even before the official announcement, Chief Election Commissioner OP Rawat said that the matter will be investigated.
“Be assured that actions legally and administratively befitting will be taken,” Rawat added.
The term of the 224-member Karnataka Assembly ends on 28 May this year.
The BJP is seeking to wrest control of the southern state from the Congress and has already declared former chief minister BS Yeddyurappa as its chief ministerial candidate.
The ruling Congress is going to polls under the leadership of Chief Minister Siddaramaiah, in its bid to retain its hold over the state. Karnataka is the only big state, besides Punjab, which is now ruled by the Congress.
It is vital for the Congress to retain Karnataka to set a tone for the 2019 general elections, and also because it is currently in power only in three states — Punjab, Karnataka and Mizoram, besides the Union Territory of Puducherry.