Karnataka government junks voter inducement claim

Dinesh Gundu Rao (DH Photo)

The Urban Development Department (UDD) has rubbished the claims by Karnataka Pradesh Congress Committee (KPCC) president Dinesh Gundu Rao that the government has sanctioned projects worth thousands of crores to influence voters.

The UDD has refuted the claims in its response to Rao’s complaint to the Election Commission that the government is sanctioning projects both within and outside the city to influence voters, defying the Model Code of Conduct (MCC) in place in the 15 constituencies going for byelections.

“The government has been releasing funds worth several thousands of crores to each of these (15 constituencies) for taking up development works with an intention to gain monetary benefits for the prospective candidates of the BJP and also to induce the voters for the said constituencies for their prospects,” Rao said in his complaint.

In response, the UDD said the action plan for BBMP works was approved by the cabinet a day before the code came into effect. “The provisions are made only for the emergency works that are under 
Rs 2 crore,” it clarified.

Referring to the sanctioned works, the UDD said in its letter: “Only the works of BMRCL, BWSSB and others have been given the 4(G) exemption for the consultation of works and reports that are below Rs 2 crore in its costs.”

Regarding the controversial white-topping work in Yediyur ward, it said: “On October 21, the approval to invite tenders for the white-topping of Patalamma Temple Road from Armugam Circle to Southend Circle to 9th Main and 22nd Cross Junction in Padmanabhanagar constituency, and roads from 23rd Cross, National Cooperative Bank Road to 36th Cross, 4th Main, in Jayanagar and Padmanabhanagar constituencies has been given.” 

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