More trouble for BJP? MLA alleges Muslims were bribed to abstain from voting in Kasaragod

The BJP has been controlling the Madhur gram panchayat in Kasaragod assembly constituency for the past four decades and a half.

Published: 14th June 2021 04:55 AM  |   Last Updated: 14th June 2021 04:55 AM   |  A+A-

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For representational purposes (Photo | PTI)

By Express News Service

KASARGOD: In what could spell another trouble for the BJP, Kasaragod MLA N A Nellikkunnu alleged Muslim voters of Madhur grama panchayat were bribed to abstain from voting in the Kasaragod assembly election.The MLA said Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan assured him that an investigation would be ordered into his allegation.

The BJP has been controlling the Madhur gram panchayat in Kasaragod assembly constituency for the past four decades and a half. Nellikkunnu said Rs 3,000 to Rs 10,000 were distributed in Issath Nagar, Old Choori and Battompara -- areas dominated by Muslims -- in ward number 46 of Madhur panchayat on April 5, the eve of the election. “The voters were told to have biryani with the money and abstain from voting,” the MLA told TNIE.

Without naming the BJP in his letter to the chief minister, Nellikkunnu said the allegations were grave against the backdrop of the Kodakara hawala heist.The UDF leaders in the panchayat got the whiff of the alleged bribing that day itself and filed a written complaint with the State Election Commission on April 6. Nellikkunnu -- who sought the mandate of the people for the third time -- was pitted against the BJP’s district president K Shreekanth.

The IUML leader defeated Shreekanth by 12,901 votes -- the best of his three winning margins. The BJP saw its vote share slip by 3.83 percentage points from 2016.The BJP is facing a slew of corruption charges linked to the election.The Kasaragod police have registered an FIR against its party state president K Surendran for allegedly bribing his rival K Sundara to withdraw from the Assembly election in Manjeshwar constituency. 

Surendran is also accused of paying Rs 10 lakh in cash to tribal leader C K Janu to bring her to the NDA ahead of the election.The party is also being linked to the hawala heist at Kodakara bridge in Thrissur on April 3, where around Rs 3.5 crore was robbed from RSS volunteer and businessman A K Dharmarajan.



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