The BJP on Friday approached the Election Commission demanding action against the Congress and its president Rahul Gandhi for his interview published in an English daily on Thursday, claiming it is a "shining example" of paid news.
A delegation including union ministers JP Nadda, Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi and BJP's media in-charge Anil Baluni submitted a memorandum to the poll panel enclosing a copy of the interview that was published from Hyderabad, saying "the reporting by way of an interview...is shining example of paid news."
Addressing the media after meeting the poll panel officials, Mr Naqvi said,"Just a day before the polling in Telangana and Rajasthan, Rahul Gandhi through his interview, which was actually a paid news, tried to influence voters and electoral process also. It is a violation of electoral reforms."
Mr Naqvi further said that Mr Gandhi in his interview cited a survey to claim that the Congress is winning and BJP is losing elections in all the five states.
"This news (interview) comes under the category of paid news. As per the rules no campaigning or such interviews should be done 48 hours before the polling. Gandhi intentionally tried to influence voters and free and fair process of election. We demand an immediate action against him and his party," he said.
The BJP in the memorandum further said that the interview "goes against the very spirit and parameters of the permitted coverage in the compendium of poll panel's compendium of instructions on the media related matters".