Congress urges Election Commission to stop PM Modi biopic’s release

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FILE - In this Aug. 28, 2014, file photo, Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi speaks at the launch of a campaign aimed at opening millions of bank accounts for poor Indians in New Delhi, India. Modi swept 2014 elections promising to reform India’s economy, but his signature demonetization policy, intended to reduce money laundering, choke terrorist financing and boost digital payments, has been largely deemed a failure. But a standoff with nuclear rival Pakistan appears to have given Modi, the head of India's Hindu nationalist Bharatiya Janata Party-led government, a boost ahead of national elections set to begin in April, 2019. (AP Photo/Saurabh Das, File)

Veteran Congress leader Suresh Mishra on Wednesday urged the Election Commission (EC) to stop the release of “PM Narendra Modi”, a biopic based on the life of the Prime Minister. The film is scheduled to be released on April 5.

In a letter to the EC, Mishra said, “The release of the film during the Lok Sabha elections is a pre-planned strategy. The BJP is violating the model code of conduct by promoting the PM’s story and trying to cash in on his reach.”

“The world’s eyes are on India during elections. The release of the film at this time will be a mockery of our democracy,” he said.

Mishra also accused Union Minister of State for Information and Broadcasting Rajyawardhan Singh Rathore of misusing his position to get the Central Board Of Film Certification (CBFC) clearance for the film and have it released during elections.

The film is being promoted through posters, banners, TV, newspapers and magazines. As per the EC rules, expenses on these should be included in the election publicity funds, he wrote in the letter.