The goodies bait continues

Residents got all they asked for and more. This was in return for their votes. From alcohol to food and money, voters in Bengaluru South had it all at their dispense.

When this reporter visited one of the polling stations in Vastu Layout, here is what unfolded.

Children, aged about 10 walked up to her with pamphlets of BJP and Congress in their hands. One of them was quick to ask, “Whom are you going to vote for?” Even before the reply came, the boy said, “you get juice if you vote for BJP and a meal if you vote for Congress,” as he pointed to the other end of the road.

This was just one such incident in the area. Talk to residents in Singasandra and they confess to have been given at least Rs 1,500 per vote. However, the irony is that in most cases, the voters did not even remember who had paid them money. A senior citizen who had come to the Hosa Road area to vote was seen waiting in the queue.

The woman remarked, “For me, what the candidate assures does not matter. Last week, me and my husband were given Rs 500 each and told that we might need it as we are senior citizens. It is only out of courtesy that I have turned up today.”

If this was not enough, on a hot Saturday afternoon at Kudlu, distribution of caps with party symbols on them came in handy for party workers to woo voters. At Kasavanahalli, love for liquor drew many to the booths.

“Do not keep it in a way that everyone can see it. Wrap it properly,” a party worker was quick to add as he handed over Rs 500 to Manjula (name changed) who walked into the polling booth with her child and mother-in-law. All this, with the micro observer at a distance of just about 10 feet.

Even as the women did not confess that they took money from the party worker, they said that the men at home were offered a bottle of liquor and Rs 100. Besides these, free drops to the polling stations in areas around Singasandra and other wards of Bommanahalli were a common sight. 

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