The advertisements of Karnataka's Congress government in Telangana dailies have been banned by the Election Commission ahead of assembly polls in the southern state. The poll body's decision came in response to a complaint by the BJP, which is trying to carve a niche in the state, and the ruling Bharat Rashtra Samithi of K Chandrashekar Rao.
The Election Commission has issued notice to the Principal Secretary of Karnataka government and sought a reply by 5 pm tomorrow.
It has asked why action should not be taken against the Information Department officer in view of the Model Code of Conduct in place in Telangana.
In its complaint, the BJP -- which has tied up with actor-politician Pawan Kalyan's Jana Sena -- and the BRS, alleged that the Congress was misusing public money to influence elections.
The Congress has won the assembly election in Karnataka held earlier this year, ousting the BJP from power in the only southern state it ruled.
Over the weekend, the Election Commission had withdrawn the permission to the Telangana government to provide financial aid to farmers under the Rythu Bandhu Scheme, after a state minister made a public announcement about it. The poll body said it was a violation of the Model Code.
"There shall be no disbursement under the Scheme till the Model Code of Conduct in the State of Telangana ceases to apply in all its forms," the Commission had said.
Ahead of the election, the move was a huge setback to the BRS government, which is hoping for a third consecutive term in power in India's youngest state.
Elections are due in Telangana on Thursday. The votes will be counted on Sunday, December 3, along with votes from four other states.