New Delhi: The Election Commission Friday said that Prime Minister Narendra Modi did not violate the Model Code of Conduct by addressing the nation with his ‘Mission Shakti’ speech Wednesday.
A committee constituted by the EC to examine if there were any violations in the speech also concluded that state broadcaster Doordarshan only took the feed from news agency ANI, and did not broadcast the speech directly.
In a letter dated 27 March, the public service broadcaster communicated to the EC that it borrowed the feed from ANI.
EC’s letter to complainant Yechury
Writing to CPI(M) leader Sitaram Yechury, who had first complained to it about the alleged violation, the EC said: “The committee has therefore, reached the conclusion that the MCC provision regarding misuse of official mass media as contained in Para (IV) of Model Code of Conduct, quoted above, is not attracted in the instant case.
“The committee members examined, in detail, the transcript of the PM’s message, inputs given by DG, DD and DG, AIR, and all correspondence received from them. It is clear that Doordarshan has only used the feed provided by ANI. The All India Radio has taken audio output as broadcast by Doordarshan News for dissemination over All India Radio network,” the letter added.
According to the EC letter, DD told the commission that it “subscribes to the news agency ANI, which provides the visuals of news events round the clock. This arrangement is continuing since a long time”.
“The Prime Minister’s message was telecast on more than 60 news channels in addition to Doordarshan as per their information,” the letter added.
Further, it said that the telecast was not live on DD.
As for AIR, it had also told the EC on 27 March that it had borrowed the feed from DD. AIR has unequivocally “certified that the broadcast of PM’s message on 27.03.2019 over AIR was made by patching the signal of Doordarshan News”.
It has further stated that “no broadcast or technical professional of All India Radio went to record the PM and no production activity was involved in the broadcast”.