Row over BJP candidate religion for M'luru Palike poll

BJP contestant, Sangeetha R Nayak (DH Photo)

Member of Legislative Council Ivan D’Souza has alleged that the BJP candidate for election to Pachchanadi ward of Mangaluru City Corporation has furnished false information to the Election Commission about her religion.

Addressing a press meet at District Congress Committee office here on Saturday, D’Souza said that the BJP contestant, Sangeetha R Nayak has obtained an order from the court declaring her religion as Hindu, but has identified herself as Muslim in the declaration to the Election Commission. He said that returning officer had accepted her nomination papers despite an objection raised by the Congress. “We will move the Karnataka High Court in this regard and also lodge a complaint with the State Election Commission,” he said.

Pachchanadi ward is reserved for ‘A’ category (women). Sangeetha, who was born Israt Begum, married Ravindra Nayak and had moved the court in 2017 seeking to change her religion as “Hindu” in all her records including date of birth certificate. The court has ruled in her favour also. However, in the caste certificate issued by tahsildar, which is submitted with nomination papers, her religion is mentioned as Muslim, the MLC said, alleging that Sangeetha had suppressed the court order while obtaining the said certificate.

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