Karnataka BJP files plaint with EC against Congress MLC candidate Ramoji Gowda, alleges MCC violation

The gift packs from DTDC included boxes filled with crockery along with the party’s election manifesto and also featured pamphlets bearing the candidate's name, the complaint said.

BySouth First Desk

Published May 16, 2024 | 4:27 PMUpdatedMay 16, 2024 | 4:27 PM

Karnataka BJP files plaint with EC against Congress MLC candidate Ramoji Gowda, alleges MCC violation

The BJP has filed a complaint with the Chief Electoral Officer, demanding swift action against Ramoji Gowda, an MLC candidate of the Congress for Bengaluru Graduate Constituency, alleging his involvement in the distribution of gift packs worth lakhs to voters violating the Model Code of Conduct.

The gift packs from DTDC included boxes filled with crockery along with the party’s election manifesto and also featured pamphlets bearing the candidate’s name, it said.

Upon receiving the information, Naveen, the election agent of BJP candidate A. Devegowda on 15 May, visited the spot at DTDC godown in JP Nagar, near Sarakki, where he found boxes, filled with crockery and election manifestos, bearing Gowda’s name, being stacked in the vehicle to be distributed, the complaint said.

They took photographs and videos of the scene and promptly alerted the officials, demanding action. The complaint further said that similar boxes were being stored in thousands at another DTDC godown in Neralur Village of Anekal Taluk.

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‘Lack of urgency on part of police’

The BJP officials in the complaint to the CEO also expressed their frustration over what they perceived as a lack of urgency on the part of the police in addressing the matter, suggesting that candidate’s potential influence on the law enforcement officials.

According to the complaint, Gowda stored these gifts in various agency branches of DTDC across the constituency, intending to distribute them to voters.

This action violates the model code of conduct, as it involves attempting to influence voters in his favour, constituting an offense under both the IPC and the Representation of the People Act, 1950, it stated.

The BJP concluding the letter, urged the CEO to issue immediate directives to concerned officers for the seizure of all gifts stored in DTDC godowns across the constituency.

They also requested to take necessary legal actions against both the candidate, Ramoji Gowda, and DTDC for their alleged involvement and facilitation of the violation of the MCC.

Reacting to the complaint, CEO Manoj Kumar Meena told South First that raids by the flying squad team and commercial tax department were underway and also promised appropriate action.

(Edited by Shauqueen Mizaj, with inputs from Nolan Pinto)