A day after Prime Minister Narendra Modi made remarks about Muslims being “ghuspaithias (invaders)” and “producing multiple children” in an election rally in Rajasthan, opposition parties approached the Election Commission as well as the police to take action.

At an election rally in Banswara on April 21, the PM said: “When their government was in power, they had said that Muslims have the first right over the country’s property. Whom will they distribute it to after accumulating the property? They will give it to people who have more children. Should your hard-earned money be given to infiltrators? Do you accept it? This is what the Congress manifesto says that gold of mothers and sisters will be accounted for, searched and then distributed to Muslims, whom Manmohan Singh ji had said has the first right over property. Brothers and sisters, this is urban naxal mentality. My mothers and sisters, they will not even leave your mangalsutra.”

Many opposition leaders posted their outrage over the speech on social media. On Monday afternoon, a Congress delegation led by senior leader Abhishek Manu Singhvi met the Election Commission and submitted a complaint. “Our complaint deals with the extremely objectionable comments made by no less than the honourable Chief Executive of this government. We respect the office that he holds. He is as much our Prime Minister as he is yours and of the BJP. The higher the post he holds, the greater the need to exercise restraint. Unfortunately, the statement we have quoted is seriously objectionable. We can never expect this from someone as eloquent as our PM. We pray to him with folded hands to withdraw these comments and clarify,” said Singhvi.

“We have asked the Election Commission to reinstate what the position in law with regard to such comments is. I cannot quote what he has said, but it has been extensively reported in the media, and the videos are available. He has named a community, and he has talked of religion blatantly. He has linked it with the deprivation of resources of the majority and garnering and manipulation of resources by the minority community. He has brought in Hindu imagery of mangalsutra. He has violated Section 123, the basic principle of not allowing the incitement and inflammation of communal passions, in several circulars of the Election Commission during the model code of conduct. He has violated the constitutional ethos, which makes secularism the basic structure. A level playing field and democracy are also part of the basic structure. This is a very serious violation. The Election Commission is itself on trial,” said Singhvi.

Communist parties responded by approaching the police and the Election Commission.

Brinda Karat, Member, CPI (M) Polit Bureau, and Pushpinder Singh Grewal, Delhi State Secretariat member of the CPI (M), lodged a complaint with the SHO, Mandir Marg police station, against the Prime Minister for “promoting enmity between groups” and “making statements that are imputations and assertions that are prejudicial to national integration.” The Mandir Marg police station refused to accept the complaint, and the CPI (M) has forwarded it to the Commissioner of Police, Delhi.

According to the complaint filed by CPI (ML) (Liberation) with the EC, the PM’s comments violate Section 123 (3A) of the Representation of People Act, which prohibits the promotion of enmity or hatred among communities. It also violates the model code of conduct, according to the complaint.