Poll panel queries JMM lawmaker on RS poll rigging

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Ranchi, Aug 16 (IANS) A two-member team of the Election Commission on Tuesday met a Jharkhand Mukti Morcha (JMM) legislator to inquire into the alleged rigging of the Rajya Sabha polls held in June this year.

JMM legislator Chamra Linda later told reporters that he presented his side to the Election Commission (EC) team and responded to whatever queries were put to him.

Chamra did not vote in the Rajya Sabha elections, having taken ill and hospitalised, and also having been put under arrest in a case going back to 2013.

The Election Commission team had also summoned Congress legislators Nirmla Devi and Bittu Singh. Neither of them could personally appear before the EC team and instead sent their representatives.

Nirmala Devi’s husband Yogendra Sao told the EC team that his wife was unwell and needed a week’s time to depose.

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Bittu Singh’s personal secretary said the lawmaker could not appear before the EC team because he received the notice only on Tuesday.

The role of Bittu Singh came under scanner as he did not vote in the Rajya Sabha elections.

The EC is acting on a complaint filed by former Jharkhand chief minister Babulal Marandi, who leads Jharkhand Vikas Morcha-Prajatantrik (JVM-P).

The ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) had won both the Rajya Sabha seats despite the fact that it did not have the required number of supporting members of the assembly.

Union Minister Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi and businessman Mahesh Poddar won the two seats, while opposition candidate Basant Soren of the JMM lost the poll.

Babulal Marandi had subsequently released an audio and video CD which showed that Chief Minister Raghubar Das had met Yogendra Sao, husband of Congress legislator Nirmla Devi, on June 10, a day before the poll.

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The audio also had the voice of Additional Director General of Police Anurag Gupta and Chief Minister’s Political Advisor Ajay Kumar. The CD showed Gupta purportedly persuading Sao to prevent his wife from voting in the Rajya Sabha poll.



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