The Election Commission of India has accepted Himanta Biswa Sarma's plea seeking to reduce the ban placed on his campaign rallies from 48 hours to 24 hours.
The poll body had on Friday barred the Assam minister from campaigning for 48 hours for allegedly making threatening remarks against Bodoland People's Front (BPF) chief Hagrama Mohilary.
EC's previous order would have meant that Sarma's campaigning effectively would have come to an end as the campaigning for the third and final phase of the Assam elections ends on April 4. However, now the ban has been reduced to 24 hours, so Sarma can restart his campaigning on April 4.
The EC in its reply to Sarma's appeal said, "The Commission, having considered your aforesaid unconditional apology and assurance/undertaking, in the above mentioned representation, has decided to modify its Order dated 2nd April, 2021 and reduce the period of debarment from election campaign from 48 hours to 24 hours to the effect that permission may be granted for holding any public meetings, public processions, public rallies, road shows, etc., by the concerned district administration authorities, where you are expected or likely to participate."
The minister's team earlier on Saturday had said that it would go to the EC to review the order issued by the agency where it had "condemned the statements made by him and barred Biswa "from holding any public meetings, public processions, public rallies, road shows, interviews and public utterances in media linking to ongoing elections for 48 hours.