Alleging harassment by agencies investigating the voter data fraud case, staff of the Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike have threatened to shut down the civic body if any more government officials are arrested.
“If one more person is arrested, we will shut down the BBMP,” Amrut Raj, president of BBMP Officers and Employees’ Welfare Association, told The Indian Express on Wednesday.
He said investigations carried out by multiple agencies amounted to violation of the employees’ human rights, adding that a single agency should be entrusted with the investigation. “Everyone is investigating the case,” he said, referring to the inquiries by police, the State Election Commission and the regional commissioner.
During the course of the investigations, four returning officers were arrested by police and a special commissioner (administration), S Rangappa, was suspended by the government. The four have applied for bail and orders on their pleas have been posted to Friday.
Raj rejected the speculation that around 30 BBMP officials were likely to file anticipatory bail petitions in connection with the investigations, saying that none of them would do so. He alleged that the investigations were being pursued for political reasons, adding that the arrested officials were not involved in the addition or deletion of any voter data.
“In the coming days we will file a petition to quash the case itself,” Raj said. He demanded that the investigation be carried out under the provisions of the Representation of the People Act “so that the truth will come out”.
The voter fraud case is related to a survey of voters conducted in various constituencies of Bengaluru by the Chilume Educational Cultural and Rural Development Trust, which compiled key demographic data of the voters.
The Opposition Congress had demanded the resignation of Chief Minister Basavaraj Bommai over the controversy.