Hiccup for BJP ahead of election - Party nominee brother caught bribing voters

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By KHWAJA JAMAL
  • Published 21.10.10
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Muzaffarpur, Oct. 20: In what could be termed as the eleventh-hour-blow, BJP candidate from the Gaighat Assembly constituency Veena Devi has landed in a deep mess just a day before the first phase of the elections begin on October 21.

The Muzaffarpur police seized Rs 2.32 lakh from the possession of Anil Kumar Singh, brother of Veena Devi, last night. Singh was distributing the money among the voters of Gausnagar. Veena Devi is wife of JD (U) MLC, Dinesh Prasad Singh.

Senior superintendent of police (SSP) Sunil Kumar said Singh was caught red-handed while disbursing money among the voters of Gausnagar.

One Lal Babu Sharma of Minapur village, who accompanied Singh was also arrested.

Two more arrests were made later in the day. Umesh Sahni and Ram Babu Mandal, both BJP supporters, were arrested for accepting the cash being distributed by Singh.

The district police seized the cash and interrogated the voters who were offered money to cast their votes in favour Veena Devi.

Police also interrogated two villagers including Sharma who along with Singh visited the village in the night to distribute money.

Police have seized a motorbike from Sharma’s possession in which the bag stuffed with cash was kept. In the bag Indian currencies of denominations Rs 1,000, Rs 500 and Rs 100 were found. Singh, on the motorbike, sneaked in the village and distributed the money to the voters residing in the village.

Station house officer (SHO) of Gaighat Dhananjay Kumar Nirdosh said: “The voters were asleep when Singh came to the village at the behest of political touts. Soon after the news of distribution of money spread, the villagers came out of their houses and gathered in large numbers to collect cash.”

The SHO said that he along with the personnel of Special Task Force rushed to the village on a tip-off and arrested Singh and Sharma red-handed while distributing money.

“Several villagers of Gausnagar told the SHO that they were compelled and enticed to collect money being distributed by Singh and Sharma,” stated Bejhan Ram a resident of Gausnagar Dalit Tola.

After the news spread, election observer R.S. Kharb of Gaighat constituency visited Gaighat police station and took stock of the situation. The election observer also spoke to the district election officer cum district magistrate Anand Kishore and SSP Sunil Kumar regarding the incident.

Police have lodged an FIR against Singh and Sharma who have confessed to their crime. The SSP said that the police would expedite investigation in this connection to tighten noose around Veena Devi.

RJD nominee and sitting MLA from Gaighat Maheshwar Prasad Yadav demanded immediate arrest of Veena Devi and urged the election observer to debar the BJP candidate from contesting elections.