The Republic Day celebrations in Moga took an interesting turn when state Forest Minister Surjit Kumar Jayani rode a motorcycle to the venue as his security personnel struggled to keep up. This, after after a team of Election Commission officials stopped Jayani’s red-beacon car from entering the Grain Market as the code of conduct was in force in Moga in the wake of the February 23 bypoll.
Jayani borrowed the motorcycle of a forest guard standing nearby, said a source. Joram Beda, returning officer of Moga bypoll and Additional Deputy Commissioner, said: “His vehicle was stopped because as per the compendium of instructions defined by Election Commission of India, when the code of conduct has been imposed in an area, a minister cannot bring a red beacon vehicle to a government function.”
Jayani, when contacted, said: “I was not aware of this rule. After officials told me about this, I entered the venue in a motorcycle, leaving my beacon car outside. I faced no inconvenience in travelling on a motorcycle and even directed my staff to pay the bill of rest house and food from my personal funds to abide by the EC rules.”