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Sira bypolls: Video clip of MLA’s man giving cash goes viral

Express News Service

TUMAKURU: Videos of cash being distributed for votes have gone viral in Sira, which is going to polls on November 3. A clip shows some men, purported to be BJP supporters, distributing cash among the voters. Another video shows a man, claiming to be supporter of Hassan BJP MLA Preetham Gowda, telling the women voters at Veerapura and Siddapura in the presence of the MLA, “Today, we will give you Rs 200 for ‘arishina-kumkuma’ (haldi and kumkum).

The day after tomorrow, again, we will give you money. Of course, on the eve of the polling day, we will give whatever we have to give. We feel that the women folk are neglected every time.

Usually, whoever comes (on campaign) gives money to the men and goes away. You should vote for the lotus.” Taking strong note of it, Congress party counsel G Raghu has lodged a complaint with the Sira Returning Officer urging that the MLA and his supporters be barred from the constituency.

“They have been distributing money to the Anganwadi, Stree Shakti and ASHA workers,” he alleged.
KPCC president D K Shivakumar told reporters that the videos were recorded by the BJP workers themselves and shared. “We will use them as proof and  lodge a complaint with the Election Commission of India,” he said. Deputy Commissioner Dr K Rakesh Kumar informed TNIE that an FIR would be filed against those  involved in the distribution of money.

Former CM and JDS leader H D Kumarswamy who was campaigning in Sira on Tuesday, also referred to the cash-for-votes during his speech. “I had announced projects worth Rs 900 cr as CM. Instead of distributing money to the people, why don’t you implement the Upper Krishna projects and fill the 67 tanks with water,” he asked the ruling BJP.

Meanwhile, there have been allegations of buying of over 5,000 votes of the physically challenged and the ailing senior citizens. “They have started voting since October 22 and it will end on October 30. When this has not been the norm in other elections, why has this been introduced now? It will prove to be an advantage for the ruling party,” said Eshwar, a former Gram Panchayat member at Javanahalli.

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