New Delhi, Apr. 28: Politicians cutting across party lines on Monday, welcomed Election Commission’s (EC) ban on programmes and meetings of yoga guru Baba Ramdev in Lucknow in Uttar Pradesh.
The EC stated Ramdev cannot hold any meetings till May 16, the day results of general elections will be announced.
The ban comes after remark of Ramdev, who had said vice-president of the Congress party, Rahul Gandhi, visits Dalit households for ‘ picnics and honeymoon’, which triggered a storm especially among the Dalit community.
Leader of Congress party, Shobha Ojha, said Ramdev should be banned throughout the country.
“He should be banned throughout the country. He rightly belongs to a jail or a mental institution. He should be jailed for inappropriate language or be sent to mental institution and FIR (first information report) should be registered against him under the Atrocities Act,” said Ojha.
Meanwhile, leader of Communist- Party- Of -India (CPI), D. Raja, said Ramdev was not above law.
“I welcome the decision of the Election Commission. Ramdev should not treat himself above law. He can speak anything he likes and what he said was an insult to Indian women, particularly Dalit women and insult to Dalit community. What does he thinks about himself, he thinks he can speak anything just like that and get away; nobody is above law in our country,” said Raja.
Election Commission of India issued revised guidelines to stop these ‘malicious’ statements and said the perpetrators of such comments would not be allowed to hold campaigning programmes.
Reportedly, two separate First Information Reports (FIRs) were filed against Ramdev, including one by police in Uttar Pradesh.
However, Ramdev defended himself saying that those who misinterpreted the language should be penalised and not him.
Senior Lawyer, Majid Memon, said the ban was not a violation of rights.
“Yoga guru is not a political personality, so he should not give any political statements that can trigger conflict. What he said was not considered appropriate by the society and he is not contesting any elections also. So, ban on him till May 16 is no violation of his rights,” Memon said. (ANI)