Two people were arrested on Wednesday in connection with the recovery of 9,746 voter identity cards from an apartment in Bengaluru’s Jalahalli area on Tuesday, Chief Election Officer Sanjiv Kumar told ANI. Jalahalli comes under the Rajarajeshwari Assembly constituency.
An unidentified official of the Election Commission told Hindustan Times that a special observer was sent after “the Election Commission received an email from the Bharatiya Janata Party and a delegation of Congress leaders also submitted a memorandum on Wednesday about the incident”. The special observer’s report is expected to be ready by Wednesday night or Thursday.
Delegations of the Congress and the BJP met the election commissioner to discuss the matter. After the meeting, former Union Minister and Congress leader Anand Sharma said: “We have submitted a memorandum on the malpractices of the BJP and a concerted attempt by the ruling party at the Centre to subvert the process of free elections, targeting of Congress candidates and midnight raids.”
Sharma added that it was the BJP and not the Election Commission or the police who had raided the flat, and that the apartment belonged to a BJP leader, while its tenant was also a member of the party. “There are dozens of constituencies where BJP in the next coming days will stage-manage incidents, not only to influence the elections, but somehow with the support of central agencies delay elections in these constituencies,” he said.
A BJP delegation comprising Union Ministers Smriti Irani, Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi, JP Nadda, Dharmendra Pradhan and SS Ahluwalia met the Election Commissioner at 6 pm, and demanded that the election in the constituency be countermanded.