Cash for Vote: BJP demands case against all six legislators (Lead)

August 6th, 2010 - 7:59 pm ICT by IANS  

Bharatiya Janata Party Ranchi, Aug 6 (IANS) The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) Friday expressed unhappiness over two Congress legislators being spared in the First Information Report (FIR) that has been lodged after a news channel telecast a sting operation showing them ready to sell their votes in the Rajya Sabha elections in June.
Three Congress, two JMM and one BJP legislator were shown ready to sell their votes in the sting operation by Cobra Post and telecast on CNN-IBN news channel.

“An FIR was lodged Thursday night against four legislators,” M.V. Rao, inspector general of Jharkhand vigilance bureau, told reporters Friday.

The FIR has been lodged under different sections of the Prevention of Corruption Act against Rajesh Ranjan of the Congress, Jharkhand Mukti Morcha’s (JMM) Simon Marandi and Teklal Mahato, and Bharatiya Janata Party’s (BJP) Uma Shankar Akela.

“When six legislators were shown in the ‘Cash for Vote’ sting operation, then why two Congress legislators have been spared? FIR should be filed against all the six legislators. There should be no partiality in the investigation. We demand FIR should be filed against the two legislators of Congress who were shown in the sting operation,” Raghubar Das, state BJP president, told IANS.

The two Congress legislators who have been spared are Sawana Lakra and Yogendra Sao.

The complaint was lodged as per the directive of the Election Commission, said Jharkhand chief secretary A.K. Singh.

Government sources say the election commission had asked for lodging the FIR against only four legislators and that it had spared the two Congress legislators.

The sting operation showed Congress’ legislators Sawan Lakra, Rajesh Ranjan and Yogendra Sao were ready to sell their votes and they allegedly demanded Rs.1 crore each.

The two JMM legislators Simon Marandi and Teklal Mahato were allegedly ready to sell their votes for Rs.1 crore and Rs.2 crore, respectively. The lone BJP legislator was ready to sell his vote for Rs.50 lakh and one vehicle.

The Election Commission Tuesday directed the Jharkhand government to register a police case against the legislators.

The poll panel also said the offence was punishable with imprisonment of not less than six months which could extend to five years and a fine.

In the Rajya Sabha poll, Congress and JMM nominees Dheeraj Sahu and K.D. Singh won by securing 28 and 32 votes, respectively.

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