From Prime Minister Narendra Modi kicking off his election rally for the upcoming general election to JD(S) and Congress politicians coming under the scanner by the I-T department, here are the latest election-related developments:
PM Narendra Modi addressed rallies in Meerut and Rudrapur ahead of the first phase of Lok Sabha polls. ‘For seven decades, the Congress has cheated Uttarakhand. Shouldn’t such liars be punished? Will you punish them on April 11? When you gave a chance to this chowkidar in 2014, I tried to bring vikas to every corner of Uttarakhand. But the Congress has always been a hurdle in all my endeavours. The 2019 polls will be a contest between chowkidar and daagdar,” he said.
Of the 1,587 nominations filed in the 39 Lok Sabha constituencies, as many as 932 nominations were accepted and 655 rejected, according to the chief electoral officer Satyabrata Sahoo. Addressing a press conference on March 28, he said that out of the 932 nominations accepted, Karur recorded the highest with 52 nominations, while Nilgiris recorded the lowest, 10.
A group of Muslim women from over 10 states said on March 27 the new dispensation at the Centre should bring a law against mob lynching. Ahead of the April-May parliamentary election, the women, including Khalida, the wife of alleged lynching victim Umar Khan, published a manifesto listing their demands. The women, who came together under Bebaak Collective — a movement against hatred — demanded the political parties “restore” constitutional rights of women and minorities.
Andhra Pradesh and Telangana
The Andhra Pradesh government filed a petition in the high court against the Election Commission’s directive ordering the transfer of state director general (DGP) of intelligence and two district superintendents of police (SP) on March 27. Though the government immediately complied with the ECI directive on the night of March 26, it filed a plea challenging the order, even as the ruling Telugu Desam Party cried foul. It cancelled March 26 night’s order and issued a fresh government order on March 27 afternoon retaining the DG Intelligence in his post while transferring out the two SPs. The ECI order took a political hue with Chief Minister N Chandrababu Naidu protesting the manner in which the intelligence chief and two district SPs were ordered to be transferred and kept out of election duties.
The two regional parties ruling the Telugu states — Telugu Desam Party in Andhra Pradesh and Telangana Rashtra Samithi in Telangana — on March 28 claimed that they would emerge as dominant players at national level after the general elections and play a key role in deciding who would become the next prime minister.
In a pre-dawn swoop on March 28, income tax officials, along with CRPF personnel, carried out raids at the residences of Karnataka minor irrigation minister CS Puttaraju and his nephew. Raids were also carried out at the residences of PWD minister HD Revanna, close associates Narayana Reddy, Ashwath Gowda and Raya Gowda in Hassan, sources said. Sources in the Congress said the raids have been carried out in at least 10 to 15 places across the city and elsewhere. In protest, JD(S) and Congress workers protested outside the income tax office.
After the BJP announced Tejasvi Surya as its Bangalore South candidate, a businesswoman took to Twitter to call him a womaniser, abuser and woman beater. After the tweets went viral, she deleted them and put up a tweet asking people to leave the issue alone. The victim even deleted the Twitter account. Responding to the allegations, Surya said he respects the women and don’t want to go further.
BJP Kozhikode Lok Sabha candidate Prakash Babu remanded to 14 day judicial custody by Pathanamthitta Court in connection with Sabarimala case violence.
Biju Janata Dal wrote to the chief electoral officer of Bhubaneswar demanding action against BJP for alleged violation of model code of conduct ‘for surrogate advertising through a TV serial broadcast on a TV channel in which the characters talk about Atal Pension Yojana.’
The Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) will contest all 26 seats in Gujarat.
Notification for the third phase of Lok Sabha polls in Uttar Pradesh will be issued on March 28. According to the Election Commission, the parliamentary constituencies going to polls in the third phase include Moradabad, Rampur, Sambhal, Firozabad, Mainpuri, Etah, Badaun, Aonla, Bareilly and Pilibhit. The last date for filing of nominations is April 4, while scrutiny of nominations will be held on April 5.
Samajwadi Party released another list of candidates. Nasir Qureshi will contest from Moradabad, Bhagwat Sharan Gangwar from Bareily, Pooja Pal from Unnao, Shyam Sunder Yadav from Jhansi and Nathuni Prasad Kushwaha from Kushinagar.
Three BJP candidates were officially declared winners from their constituencies, without a vote being cast. This is because of the rejection of “defective” nomination papers of opponents in two cases and the withdrawal of a rival in the third, said a report in The Hindu.