National

FIR Registered After Nearly 10,000 Voter ID Cards Found In Bengaluru Apartment

DIVYIA ASTHANA | 0
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| May 9 , 2018 , 08:17 IST

The Election Commission on Tuesday night ordered an inquiry into the discovery of 9,746 voter ID cards from a Bengaluru apartment in the Raja Rajeshwari Nagar constituency barely days before the Karnataka polls on May 12. An FIR has also been registered, the Chief Electoral Officer for Karnataka Sanjeev Kumar confirmed.

"FIR has been registered and further investigations will be conducted. The situation is being closely monitored by the Election Commission and appropriate action will be taken," said Kumar during a press conference around midnight.

"On preliminary investigation these 9746 EPIC cards are of actual electors and appear to be prima facie genuine. However the significance of the counterfoils can only be verified after due investigation," he added.

The BJP alleged that the apartment was connected to a Congress lawmaker, while the Congress claimed that the apartment was connected to the BJP and that the BJP was enacting a 'midnight drama' by planting 'fake evidence' to attract attention.

Union Minister Sadananda Gowda called for delaying the voting in the Raja Rajeshwari Nagar constituency due to the fake voter IDs.

"The Democracy being attacked in Bengaluru. I am shocked at the incident. More than 20000 Voter ID cards found at a private apartment. I visited the place personally. This mockery at the behest of @INCIndia Rajarajeshwari Nagara Candidate Munirathna Naidu," Gowda said in a tweet.

"Mr Election Commissioner, how can 20000 + voter card can be found in private place. 5 laptops, printer, thousands of Form 6 Acknowledgement found in trunks. Someone is riding on democracy. Election to Rajarajeshwari Nagar Constituency should be withheld immediately," he said.

The Election Commission, admitting the 'serious matter' said that the decision to countermand elections in Raj Rajeshwari Nagar cannot be decided now.

Meanwhile, JD(S) leader Danish Ali alleged that both the national parties are using unethical means.

"We appeal to EC that there should be no compromise with free and fair elections. It is a serious matter. All unethical means are being adopted by both national parties (Congress and BJP)," Ali said.

The Raja Rajeshwari Nagar is one of the larger constituencies in Bengaluru, with around 4.71 lakh voters. The seat had been won by Congress candidate Munirathna Naidu in 2013 with a 37 percent share vote. Seeking re-election Munirathna, is pitted against BJP's Muniraju Gowda.