Bengaluru, May 9: The Congress and the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) on Wednesday continued to attack each other over the seizure of nearly 10,000 voter IDs from a flat in the Rajarajeshwari Nagar Assembly seat of west Bengaluru. A Congress delegation, led by Anand Sharma, met the Election Commission and submitted a detailed memorandum about alleged malpractices by the BJP in Karnataka Assembly elections. A BJP delegation comprising of Union Ministers Smriti Irani, Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi, JP Nadda and Dharmendra Pradhan will also meet the EC at in the evening.
BJP supporter Rakesh on Wednesday rebuffed Congress’ allegation about him being the tenant of the flat from where 9746 voter IDs were seized last night. Congress alleged that the owner of the flat and BJP leader Manjula Nanjamari rented it to her son Rakesh, who contested corporation election on a BJP ticket in 2015. Nanjamari’s son Sridhar Nanjamari however clarified that Rakesh was his cousin and that Rakesh had no connection with the flat.
Addressing the press, Rakesh concurred with Sridhar Nanjamari’s claim and said, “I have no connection with that flat, neither do I have any relation with that aunt (Manjula Nanjamari) for the last 10 years.” Rakesh said that he was, in fact, the whistleblower in the whole case.
Last night, 9,746 voter ID cards were found from a flat in SLV Park View Apartment in Bengaluru’s Jalahalli locality, and the Election Commission’s revelation of the same at midnight was followed by political sparring, as both BJP and Congress alleged the other’s links with the concerned flat. The spokesman of the Congress party Randeep Singh Surjewala alleged that the flat where the voter IDs were found belonged to a BJP leader.
“BJP enacted this drama in an apartment belonging to their own leader Manjula Nanjamari. She has rented the apartment to her son who contested the 2015 BBMP (Bengaluru civic body) elections on a BJP ticket. The apartment was raided not by police or EC but by BJP workers,” Surjewala alleged at a press conference on the early hours of Wednesday. On the other hand, the BJP urged the poll panel to countermand the May 12 Assembly poll in the constituency, terming it a conspiracy by the ruling Congress to rig the election.
FIR Registered in Case on Voter ID Counterfoils
The EC on the wee hours of Wednesday filed a First Information Report (FIR) in the matter. “An FIR is being registered after nearly 9,746 voter cards were found in a flat in Rajarajeshwari Nagar constituency along with around one lakh counterfoils resembling acknowledgement slips used for addition of names into electoral rolls were found,” the state’s Chief Electoral Officer Sanjiv Kumar told reporters here on late Tuesday night.
On preliminary verification, the voter cards were found to be genuine, while the counterfoils were to be verified through investigation, Kumar said. Five laptops and one printer were also found in the apartment, he added.