Punjab polls: FIR against BJP candidate to ‘influence’ voters

BJP candidate from Garhshankar arrested for allegedly trying to influence voters with alcohol, cash and other gifts ahead of Punjab elections

Party candidate Bharatiya Janata from Garhshankar assembly segment in Hoshiarpur district was arrested for allegedly trying to influence voters with alcohol, money and other gifts after a audio clip of his alleged phone conversation was shared with the police a day before the Punjab elections.

While police say they are still verifying the authenticity of the audio clip, BJP candidate Nimisha Mehta dismissed the allegations, calling the clip fake and “a ploy by her opponents to damage her reputation as they were intimidated by her popularity “.

Sub-Inspector Rakesh Kumar, who is the complainant to the FIR, said he received the audio clip on his cell phone from an informant. Deputy Commissioner Apneet Riyat, who is the electoral officer for the district, said when the matter came to her attention, she passed it on to the Chief Superintendent of Police to take action.

In the audio, a woman can be heard asking an acquaintance, whom she calls “Mama Ji”, to distribute alcohol and cash to win over voters. When the man refuses to engage in malpractice, the woman insists that he collect liquor vouchers from her and also give something to the female voters.

A case has been registered against Mehta and the unidentified man under the relevant sections of the Indian Penal Code and the Representation of the People Act. Deputy Superintendent of Police Garhshankar Narinder Singh said the veracity of the recording was being verified.

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