BJP wants today’s Ramanagara bypoll annulled, postponed

MLC Ashwathanarayan submits a complaint to Chief Electoral Officer Sanjiv Kumar seeking annulment and postponement of Ramanagara bypolls in Bengaluru on Friday.DH PHOTO

A stung BJP on Friday demanded “annulment and postponement” of the Ramanagara bypoll in a complaint with the Election Commission, after its candidate L Chandrashekhar backed off from the contest in the last minute.

The saffron party also urged Chief Electoral Officer Sanjiv Kumar to book cases against Chandrashekhar, Congress M P D K Suresh, Congress-JD(S) alliance candidate Anitha Kumaraswamy and Chief Minister H D Kumaraswamy for “undue influence and corrupt practices under Representation of People Act.”

The complaint was filed by a delegation of BJP leaders comprising Ashwath Narayan, Sachchidanand Murthy, Vivek Reddy, S Harish, Chi Na Ramu and Ganesh.

Chandrashekhar’s withdrawal from the poll and the circumstances surrounding that amounted to “collapse of democratic machinery and serious infringement of electoral law,” the BJP has claimed in its complaint.

The saffron party claimed that it was in “a winning position” in the Ramanagara constituency and that “certain Congress leaders led by D K Suresh” and “Chief Minister H D Kumaraswamy in order to protect his wife’s electoral future, and to prevent her from losing the election, have exercised undue influence on Chandrashekhar and have persuaded him to withdraw from the candidature.”

Chandrashekhar, son of senior Congress leader C M Lingappa, quit the Congress to join the BJP last month before nominations for the bypoll was open. On the morning of November 1, two days before polling, Chandrashekhar announced his withdrawal from the fight and stated that he was going back to the Congress, dealing a blow to the BJP.

“This fraud cannot stand and the election is to be annulled and postponed...It interferes and violates the free and absolute right of BJP voters.It is equivalent to a situation where there is death of a candidate and election has to be annulled,” the BJP argued.

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BJP wants today’s Ramanagara bypoll annulled, postponed

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