The Bilaspur Police filed a first information report against former Chhattisgarh Chief Minister Ajit Jogi on Thursday night for allegedly obtaining a fake caste certificate by claiming to be an Adivasi, PTI reported. The FIR was filed following a complaint by Bharatiya Janata Party candidate from the Marwahi seat in the 2013 Assembly polls, Sameera Paikra.
According to Paikra, Jogi obtained the fake caste certificate in 1967. Paikra filed a case based on an affidavit recently filed by former government official Patras Tirkey. Tirkey alleged in his affidavit that he never issued any certificate to Jogi when he was posted as nayab tehsildar in Bilaspur in 1967-’68. He also claimed that if Jogi produces any caste certificate, it should be regarded as fake.
On August 30, the Bilaspur Police had filed a case against Jogi after a government-appointed panel concluded that he is not from the Adivasi community. At present, Jogi represents Marwahi in the state Assembly. The seat is reserved for Adivasi communities, and Jogi is likely to lose it.
Jogi’s Adivasi status was challenged in the High Court in 2001 by Bharatiya Janata Party leader and former National Commission for Scheduled Tribes Chairperson Nand Kumar Sai, and a complainant identified as Sant Kumar Netam. The court ruled that the National Commission for Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes do not have the power to conduct inquiries into such matters. Netam approached the Supreme Court on October 13, 2011. The top court decided that a high-powered committee would investigate the case.
The committee revoked Jogi’s caste certificates in June 2017. The former chief minister then challenged this decision in High Court, and on February 21, 2018, the court directed the government to reconstitute the panel.