Alleging that Uttarakhand chief minister Vijay Bahuguna had "bought over" its MLA to vacate Sitarganj seat for him, the BJP today urged the Election Commission to intervene and demanded a CBI probe into the charges of horse trading against him.
"We have appealed to the Election Commission to stop this poll in Sitarganj and probe the allegations of use of money power in these polls.... We are asking the Election Commission to act on this and demand action from them," said BJP spokesperson Shahnawaz Hussain in Delhi.
"If this probe can take place in Jharkhand, why not in Uttarakhand," he said.
A BJP delegation called on Governor Aziz Qureshi in Dehra Dun and submitted a memorandum to register their protest against what it called "purchase" of BJP MLAs by Bahuguna.
The delegation led by state BJP chief B S Chufal and leader of the opposition Ajay Bhatt demanded a CBI probe into the alleged horse trading.
Hussain said, "The use of money power in polls has reached from Jharkhand to Uttarakhand... where BJP MLA Kiran Mandal has been brought over after use of money power... He was offered the post Chairman of the Kumaon Mandal."
In support of the bribery allegations, the BJP today paraded Mandal's grandson Kishore Rai, the village head of Tagore Nagar in Uttarakhand, who alleged that a sum of Rs 10 crore was given to the MLA alongwith the offer of Kumaon Mandal presidentship to resign and vacate the seat in favour of Bahuguna.
"A sum of Rs 10 crore was given alongwith presidentship of Kumaon Vikas Nigham to give his resignation," Rai alleged, adding that he was also offered a sum of Rs one crore to keep quiet.
The Sitarganj seat fell vacant following the resignation of BJP MLA Kiran Mandal last month. The Sitarganj bypoll, from where Uttarakhand chief minister Vijay Bahuguna is contesting, will be now held be on July 8 and counting of votes will be on July 11.
Hussain alleged, "Congress' track record (of buying legislators) is very old and specialises in doing so...Many PMs have been exposed on this. The CBI probe on Jharkhand poll is on and the Congress continues to do such things."
Amid reports that the party MLA from Ghansali Bhim Lal Arya was also ready to join Congress, Bhatt said, "One MLA has already been bought and there are reports that another MLA is also being purchased by the chief minister."
"We also demand that the Congress government in our state should be immediately be dismissed as it is running on the money-power," he said.
He also criticised Bahuguna for making a series of announcements despite the election code of conduct coming into effect in the state due to the July 8 byelection at Sitarganj. "We are also demanding that the election commission reject the nomination of Bahuguna from Sitarganj for violating the election code of conduct," Bhatt said.