Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) leader Medha Patkar today alleged that her rival candidates from Mumbai North East seat, namely Kirit Somaiya and Sanjay Dina Patil exceeded the spending limit fixed by Election Commission during campaigning for Lok Sabha elections.
"Inspite of the increased limits of expenditure by the Election Commission, the candidates spent far more than the prescribed limit and disguised the expenses as party expenses, thus making a mockery of the spending limit," Patkar said while addressing a press conference here.
Somaiya and Patil are nominees of BJP and NCP respectively from the Mumbai North East seat from where Patkar made her electoral debut. Patkar claimed that the voter slips distributed to voters in her constituency as well as in other constituencies in Mumbai were in violation of the model code of conduct. "The model code has specified that voter slips should be on a plain white paper and not contain any party symbols or names of candidate. But the laminated cards distributed by these parties had names of the parties, symbols, pictures of leaders and slogans on them," she said.
Patkar said the distribution of these cards was illegal and expenses incurred on them should be included in the election expenditure of the candidates. The activist said she had filed a complaint with the Returning Officer (RO) in this regard. "After they were issued notices by the RO, both the parties and their candidates, Kirit Somaiya and Sanjay Patil (NCP) justified the distribution of cards and said low expenses were incurred on them. "Somaiya claimed that 4,76,401 cards were printed at the cost of Rs. 4 lakh while Patil claimed 2 lakh cards were printed at the cost of 1.05 lakh," Patkar said.