BJP seeks cancellation of Naveen Patnaik's Assembly membership for allegedly misusing govt machinery

Bhubaneswar: Opposition BJP on Tuesday approached the Election Commission of India with a request to cancel chief minister Naveen Patnaik's Assembly membership for allegedly misusing government machinery.

A BJP delegation, led by the party's state vice-president Samir Mohanty, met Odisha's Chief Electoral Officer DN Gupta and also demanded that Patnaik is barred from contesting polls for three years.

File image of Naveen Patnaik. PTI

File image of Naveen Patnaik. PTI

On Monday, Ganjam district collector Prem Chand Chaudhary moved Orissa High Court to seek the recall of the notice issued by it to the election commission last week to disclose the poll expenses of Patnaik.

The HC had issued a notice to the election commission following a writ petition filed by an RTI activist last year praying that the EC take action against alleged financial irregularities committed by Patnaik.

"The case by the Ganjam district collector violates the Representation of the People Act," Mohanty told the reporters on Tuesday.

The BJD rejected the allegation and in turn, accused the BJP of attempting to tarnish Patnaik's image.

"The man who was defeated in the election in 2014 from Hinjili assembly segment did not make any such complaint. Now after three-and-half years of the elections, the BJP has been making allegations," BJD spokesperson, PK Deb said.

On Ganjam collector moving the high court, Deb said the petitioner had named him as a party in the poll expenditure case.

"The collector, therefore, made the move and there has been no misuse of government machinery as alleged," he said.

Various political parties in the state are engaged in a fierce slugfest over the ruling BJD's "controversial" bank account and Patnaik's allegedly false statements of poll expenses to ECI.

Updated Date: Jul 25, 2017 22:30 PM

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