UK candidate quits after ‘Indian businessman’ sting

  • Prasun Sonwalkar, Hindustan Times, London
  • Updated: Mar 13, 2015 00:14 IST

Another sting operation before the May elections has claimed a victim after a reporter posing as a wealthy Indian businessman offered to donate to the ruling Liberal Democrats party, and was told of ways to hide the donation to avoid strict rules governing political donations.

Ibrahim Taguri, considered a rising star of the party and its candidate for Brent Central in London, stepped down as the party candidate after the Daily Telegraph published its expose on Thursday. He said he will now stand as an independent candidate.

The seat, currently held by the Liberal Democrats, has a large number of voters of Indian and Asian origin.

The “Indian businessman” was told he could donate money to the party via a “cousin”. He was also advised to spread gifts among other family members and even backdate a cheque to the party.

This would allow the true source of the donation to remain hidden on the official register of political donations, which is mandatory.

In a sting operation released in February, two senior leaders of the Conservative and Labour parties were seen offering a fictitious Chinese company access to policy-makers for cash.

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