Updated: June 6, 2021 11:55:03 am
After facing allegations of a pre-poll cash deal to get a tribal leader to the NDA platform, the BJP Kerala unit is in the thick of another controversy. A BSP candidate who had filed his nomination at Manjeshwar Assembly constituency has alleged that leaders of the saffron party had paid him Rs 2.50 lakh to withdraw his nomination —BJP state president K Surendran contested from Manjeshwar.
The state unit of the BJP has denied the allegation and said it was a “fabricated” story.
K Sundara, who raised the allegation, had contested in the Assembly elections of 2016 from Manjeshwar as an Independent and had bagged 467 votes. This time, he had filed his nomination as BSP candidate.
The allegation came close on the heels of another claim that Surendran had paid Rs 10 lakh to tribal leader and Janathipathya Rashtriya Sabha president C K Janu to bring him into the BJP fold.
Speaking to reporters on Sunday, Sundara said he demanded Rs 15 lakh from BJP to withdraw his nomination. “The local BJP leaders came to my house a day after I filed the nomination and gave me Rs 2 lakh. My mother was given Rs 50,000. They also gave me a phone worth Rs 15,000. That was why I had withdrawn my nomination. If Surendran won from Manjeshwar, I was offered a wine parlour and a house in Karnataka,” said Sundara.
After withdrawing his nomination, Sundara had joined BJP. He did not reveal the names of the BJP leaders who had given him the money to withdraw the nomination.
However, BJP Kasaragod district president K Sreekanth denied the allegation saying the revelation was an outcome of CPI(M)-Indian Union Muslim League conspiracy. “This is a fabricated story,” he said.
CPI (M) leader V V Rameshan, who contested in Manjeshwar, moved a complaint with police seeking a probe into Sundara’s nomination. Indian Union Muslims League legislator M K K Ashraf, who won from the Manjeshwar seat, alleged that BJP had doled out money and free kits in the constituency to win over the voters.
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