Karnataka Date Leak: Only Congress, Not BJP's Amit Malviya, To Be Questioned

The Election Commission,said it doesn't need to question Amit Malviya, since he wrote to the poll body explaining the source of his tweet and the letter would be taken as his response.

The Election Commission had announced the dates for Karnataka Assembly Elections yesterday.

New Delhi: Amit Malviya of the BJP will not be questioned or investigated over the alleged leak of Karnataka election dates yesterday, an Election Commission document reveals. Mr Malviya, who heads the BJP's IT cell, and a Congress activist in Karnataka, both had tweeted the May 12 polling date before the Election Commission announced it.

But only the Congress activist, Srivatsa B - he heads the party's social media cell in Karnataka - will be questioned, according to the poll body's order setting up an inquiry into the alleged leak.

The Election Commission said that is because the BJP has already explained.

The order setting up the six-member committee had asked it to "enquire form Shrivatsa B...regarding the source of information of his tweets" on the Karnataka election schedule before its official announcement.

Mr Malviya's name was not even in the order, which has spurred critics to call the inquiry a "joke".

Later in the day, the Election Commission put out the responses that it had received from the three parties: Mr Malviya, Mr Srivatsa of the Congress and the television channel, Times Now.

Both politicians insisted that the television channel was their source of information. And the television channel said it had accessed the details from what it described as "informed sources". "Given that the information wasn't entirely accurate, it is obvious it wasn't a leak," the channel told the poll body.

Congress spokesperson Divya Spandana had earlier questioned why its order did not name the leader from the BJP, but only the Congress.

 "Dear EC, while we welcome any investigation to ensure that your credibility is not undermined however find it extremely shocking that IT head of BJP has been absolved even before enquiry begins. This definitely dents your own image and authority," she tweeted.
The Election Commission, however, said it didn't t need to question Mr Malviya at all, since he wrote to the poll body explaining the source of his tweet and the letter had been taken as his response. The top election body also said a BJP delegation had come and met its commissioners last evening with Mr Malviya's letter. "The delegation submitted all facts to the EC," said an official.

Mr Malviya had deleted within moments his tweet, which had the date of counting wrong (May 18 instead of 15).
karnataka election amit malviya tweet

BJP's IT cell chief had tweeted Karnataka election dates before the Election Commission

Amid an uproar, Mr Malviya wrote to the Election Commission and said he had based his tweet on Times Now. "I firmly believe in the exclusive constitutional domain of the Election Commission to conduct free and fair elections in the country, and also in the confidentiality and secrecy mandated upon it in the process of doing so," he wrote.

Karnataka will vote on May 12 and the results will be declared on May 15.
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