LDF’s Election Campaigning on Railway Coaches: Permission Granted by Flouting Laws

By HK published on May 10, 2016

7-15

Thiruvananthapuram: The LDF’s misuse of Indian Railways for election campaigns has exposed the double standards of senior railway officials of Kerala. The concerned ministry had granted permission for making use of railway coaches for election advertisement, as a means of enhancing the Railway’s source of revenue. However, according to sources, rules were relaxed and overlooked for LDF advertising, whereas it was made stringent for other political parties. Sources have stated that a senior railway official,who happens to be a close relative of a prominent political leader and having direct associations with LDF leaders has been instrumental in getting this done. A petition with regard to this matter has been submitted to Central Election Committee by the BJP.

 

Advertisements are pasted after having obtained consent from Election Commission. But the EC had specified that no picture of political leaders should be displayed. Accordingly, permission was granted to make use of the entire set of coaches of Eranad Express starting from Shornur. However, much to the shock and dismay of all, posters had pictures had Achuthanandan, Kodiyeri Balakrishnan and Pinarayi Vijayan. The same has been refused to members of other political parties including BJP, exposing double standards of railway officials. And with a three month contract, the posters are to be removed only after elections. Permission has also been granted to Left political parties for putting up flex in prominent railways stations like Ernakulam. However,inspite of petitions, and orders issued by the district collector, they have not been removed.
Till date, the railways have procured 20 lakh rupees from advertisements of LDF. However,if they had shed their double standards and granted permission to other political parties as well, the revenue generated would have run into crores.

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