Congress accuses Chhattisgarh home minister of rigging, assault

November 20th, 2008 - 10:11 pm ICT by IANS  

Raipur, Nov 20 (IANS) The Congress party Thursday accused Chhattisgarh home minister Ram Vichar Netam of the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) of rigging electronic voting machines (EVMs) in his constituency in Surguja district’s Ramanujganj and also of assaulting the opposition candidate. In a letter to the Chief Election Commissioner, former chief minister Jiogi, who is also convenor of the state Congress Campaign Committee, alleged that Netam rigged EVMs after polling ended at 5 p.m.

Jogi sought re-polling at two polling booths where allegedly the minister rigged EVMs.

“In Surguja district’s Ramanujganj (Scheduled Tribes) constituency, Netam was personally present inside polling booths number 22 & 23 (Pachawal), where he actively rigged the EVMs,” Jogi said in his letter.

Jogi alleged that Congress candidate Brihaspat Singh, who too was present on the spot, was physically beaten up by the home minister and his armed security officers, and thrown out of the booth.

“I, therefore, urge you to take up this matter at the highest level, and issue necessary orders for re-polling in the aforementioned polling booths,” Jogi’s letter said.

A copy of the complaint has been sent to Chhattisgarh’s chief electoral officer (CEO) J.P. Prakash, the deputy election commissioner and other officials concerned.

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