TRS' Kavitha Maloth first sitting MP to receive jail term for bribing voters
For the first time, a sitting Lok Sabha MP has been convicted of bribing voters ahead of a general election. A member of Parliament from the Telangana Rashtra Samithi (TRS) representing the Mahbubabad constituency, Kavitha Maloth was sentenced to six months of imprisonment by a special court and slapped with a fine of ₹10,000 in the cash-for-vote scam. Maloth and her associate Shaukat Ali, have been granted bail and the MP would next move the high court against the convicted.
Police said a case was registered in Bhadradri-Kothagudem after a flying squad of the Election Commission caught Ali red-handed distributing cash ( ₹500 each) among residents and seeking votes in Maloth’s favour in Bhadradri-Kothagudem district during the 2019 Lok Sabha election.
According to a report in Times of India, during interrogation, Ali confessed to committing the crime at the behest of Maloth. While Ali has been named as the first accused, the MP is the second accused in the case.
This is the third case the special sessions court, which was set up in March 2018 following a Supreme Court order for expeditious trial of lawmakers, has awarded jail terms to public representatives. Earlier, BJP MLA Raja Singh and TRS MLA Danam Nagender were also convicted by the court and penalised.