BJP candidate accused of distributing money ahead of Gujarat elections, inquiry ordered
An inquiry has been ordered against the BJP candidate from Kajran constituency of the Vadodara district in Gujarat. Kajran is one of the eight constituencies where voting started today at 7 am. The inquiry was ordered by the returning officer following the complaint by Congress candidate Kiritsinh Jadeja against his opponent, BJP candidate Akshay Patel for distributing cash for votes.
The complaint was filed by Jadeja’s election assistant, Upendrasinh Rana, on the basis of two videos which showed BJP workers’ distributing cash to people ahead of the polls. In one of the videos, BJP workers were seen handing over hundred rupee notes to people sitting in an auto-rickshaw and asking them to press the “lotus button” BJP’s party symbol. Rana demanded strict action against Akshay Patel and the BJP workers visible in the video and asked the voting in two booths to be canceled.
The chief election officer (CEO) of Gujarat S. Murali Krishna looked into the matter and told reporters that he has asked the district election officer to submit a detailed report after investigating the matter. Karajan’s Sub Divisional Magistrate KR Patel said that his department has already initiated an inquiry into the election violation. “We have begun a probe as it is a serious matter. We received the complaint this morning,” Patel said.
Kajran fight is between BJP’s Akshay Patel, who has a stronghold in the area and deflected from Congress to join BJP just before the June Rajya Sabha polls. Jadeja who is seen more as an ‘outsider’ in the area has a tough competition but Congress is hopeful of regain its foothold in the region.
Besides, Congress also accused the ruling BJP party of buying its strong candidates in order to regain power in its not so strong constituencies. On Monday, Congress raised the issue highlighting a video that showed its recent turncoat MLA accepting that he took money from the BJP to switch camp. Congress flashed the video saying it reflected BJP’s real character.
Addressing the matter in front of Ina press briefing, held through a video conferencing, along with Rajeev Satav and Arjun Modhwadia, Congress party spokesperson Dr. Abhishek M. Singhvi said that the development showed
“Chal, Chehra and Chalan, the identity of the BJP party, be it at the Centre, be it at the state level”.
“I must put it in a context that this is certainly not a flash in the pan. This is certainly not an isolated incident. From Manipur to Goa, from Karnataka to Gujarat, time and again, time and again shamelessly, we have had this excessive greed for power, bordering on paranoia, we will win or lose the election but, we must be in power. We will have a fair fight and we will lose but, we must get power at all costs. This is the real point which all these incidents illustrate and by this shameless action legislature has become a forum for business for the BJP,” he said