The Election Commission of India has written to the Indian Railways and Ministry of Civil Aviation, asking them why the pictures of Prime Minister Narendra Modi have not been removed from rail tickets and Air India boarding passes even after Model Code of Conduct has come into effect.
Both the ministries have been given three days to submit their replies.
Earlier a boarding pass issued by Air India with pictures of Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Gujarat Chief Minister Vijay Rupani came under criticism, days after the PM’s photo on railway tickets created a furore.
Following the lash, Air India on Monday March 25 had announced that it would “roll back” its boarding passes bearing photographs of Prime Minister Modi and Gujarat chief minister Vijay Rupani. The airlines had clarified that the photographs had appeared as third party advertisements.
The matter came to light when former Punjab DGP Shashi Kant on Monday tweeted a photograph of his boarding pass issued at the New Delhi airport, questioning how pictures of the two leaders could be on it.
At New Delhi airport today March 25th, 2019.
My Air India Boarding Pass, prominently flashes Narendra Modi, “Vibrant Gujrat” & Vijay Rupani. Picture of boarding pass is below.
Wonder why we are wasting public money on this Election Commission, which doesn’t see, hears or speak… pic.twitter.com/7t49cNIlAR
— Shashi Kant IPS (@shashikantips54) March 25, 2019
Air India spokesperson Dhananjay Kumar said the boarding passes seemed to be one printed during the Vibrant Gujarat Summit held in January and the photographs were part of the advertisement from ‘third parties’.
On March 20, tickets with photos of the prime minister were withdrawn by the railways after the Trinamool Congress complained to the Election Commission about them.
The railways had also said that it was a third-party ad and leftover from a pack of tickets printed a year earlier. The national transporter had instructed zones to withdraw the tickets.