AHMEDABAD: Gujarat's Chief Electoral Officer (CEO) Tuesday said the ruling BJP has not violated the model code of conduct by holding a meeting of its State Parliamentary Board at Chief Minister Vijay Rupani's official residence.
CEO S Murali Krishna had Monday ordered an inquiry into the matter after receiving a complaint in this regard from the Congress.
The inquiry into the matter did not suggest any violation of the model code of conduct, which is in force for the next month's Lok Sabha polls in Gujarat, he said.
"We have conducted an inquiry into the matter and found no violation of the model code of conduct," Krishna told PTI.
In its complaint, the main opposition party had alleged the CM's official residence in Gandhinagar is government property and no political activity is allowed from government premises when the poll code is in force.
On learning about the CEO's clean chit to the ruling party, the state Congress announced it will approach the Election Commission (EC) over the issue.
"This is a clear case of misuse of state machinery and property. Though BJP was at fault, the local election authorities chose not to take any action."
"We have decided to make a representation to the EC about this issue in coming days," said Gujarat Congress spokesperson Manish Doshi.
Polling for all the 26 Lok Sabha seats in Gujarat will be held in a single phase on April 23.
The model code of conduct came into force when the poll schedule was announced on March 10.
A three-day meeting of BJP's State Parliamentary Board was held at Rupani's official residence to prepare a panel of probable candidates for all the 26 Lok Sabha seats.
The meeting concluded on Tuesday.
State BJP president Jitu Vaghani had Monday defended the move of organising the meeting at the CM's official residence, claiming the gathering does not violate any rules.
"We have to also take care of the CM's security. Arranging such meetings at CM's residence is an old tradition."
"Party leaders are only doing brainstorming here. We have not arranged any political rally or engaged in any poll campaigning here," Vaghani had said.