The turf war between Congress-BSP in the Gandhi Nehru family's pocketborough of Raebareli and Amethi intensified on Saturday with Congress approaching the Election Commission seeking "debarring" of a senior BSP minister and transfer of Rabebareli District Magistrate during the current Assembly polls.
In a written complaint to the EC against Swami Prasad Maurya and eight administrative officers including Raebareli DM Amrita Soni, the party said they are "seeking to influence voters in favour of non-Congress parties especially BSP and SP" in assembly seats of Raebareli and Chhatrapati Sahuji Maharaj (Amethi) districts.
The Congress also demanded that Maurya, who is BSP's election in-charge for these districts should be debarred from visiting Raebareli and Amethi, alleging that "these illegal acts and omissions and rank favouritism are happening under the explicit and clear pressure of both Maurya and Raebareli DM Amrita Soni".
After meeting the EC, party spokesperson Abhishek Singhvi said officers in Raebareli and Amethi districts have been instructed by the state administration to act in a blatantly biased manner and hence they are not granting timely permissions for Congress'meetings particularly of Priyanka Gandhi.
He said that permissions for Priyanka Gandhi's meetings were granted only one and one-and-a-half hour before.
"A large number of officers are openly threatening, pressurizing and scaring Congress workers," the party said citing various instances of alleged "obstruction" by these administrative officials to Congress workers in Gauriganj, Jagdishpur, Oonchahar.
Singhvi said,"it is clear that a non-level playing field is sought to be created by the state administration and especially the ruling party to irreversibly prejudice the electoral interests of Congress. "If no transfer was done immediately, there will be irreversible damage to the fair election process."
The party also demanded that the Election Commission should reschedule polls in Dudhi assembly seat, where the nomination of Congress canditate Vijay Singh Gond was rejected.
Singhvi said that Gond's nomination was rejected wrongly and the High Court had already stayed that decision. "We have asked the EC to postpone Dudhi election to enable him to participate in the election." Election for Dudhi in the Sonebhadra district is scheduled on February 15.
Congress has already approached the Election Commission over the issue.