Opposition accuses BJP of coercion, threats in Rajya Sabha polls in Jharkhand

New Delhi: Opposition led by Congress and JMM on Tuesday accused the ruling BJP of alleged coercion and threats in the recent biennial polls to the Upper House to get its candidates elected.

Representational image. PTI

Representational image. PTI

They sought the setting up of a House Committee to probe into a CD that allegedly contains audio recordings of a senior IPS officer threatening the husband of an opposition MLA to get her to vote in favour of a candidate of the ruling party.

Raising the issue during Zero Hour, Sanjiv Kumar (JMM) alleged that on the eve of polling, two opposition MLAs were harassed in some old cases while a JMM MLA was arrested in a petty case to prevent him from casting his vote.

While other MLAs lodged in jails were allowed to cast vote, the three opposition legislators could not, leading to the victory of the ruling party candidate by one vote, he claimed.

Without naming anyone, he said the ruling party used allurements as well as threats to win over opposition MLAs.

He claimed that a CD has surfaced purportedly showing how an Additional Director General of Police coerced and threatened the husband of an opposition MLA.

According to local media reports, the CD allegedly contains conversation between the officer and Yogendra Sao, husband of Congress MLA Nirmala Devi. It also contains talks between Sao and the Chief Minister's political adviser.

Maintaining that a copy of the CD will be made available to the Union Home Minister, he demanded action against the police officer.

Leader of the Opposition Ghulam Nabi Azad also demanded sacking of the officer involved, alleging that it had become a modus operandi under the present dispensation to use threats and coercion.

Maintaining that such undemocratic acts were unacceptable, he demanded a House Committee to be formed to go into the issue and recommend action.

Sharad Yadav (JDU) said irregularities in Rajya Sabha polls was a very serious issue and a probe has to be done.

Sitaram Yechury (CPI-M) said the CD should be investigated, guilt established and the guilty punished.

Anand Sharma (Congress) too demanded formation of a House Committee to probe the incident.

Rejection allegations of irregularities, Minister of State for Parliamentary Affairs Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi said the government had full confidence in the ability of the Election Commission to hold free and fair elections.

The opposition allegations, he said, were far removed from facts and action will be initiated as per procedure in case the CD is produced.

But the Opposition members were not satisfied and continued to raise the issue.

Deputy Chairman PJ Kurien said the government has said it is ready to get the CD examined if it is submitted.

Sharma responded by asking how justice could be done if the accused itself is to examine the evidence, remarks that were expunged.

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Updated Date: Jul 26, 2016 13:02:57 IST

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