BJP candidate from Muzaffarnagar in Uttar Pradesh, Sanjeev Balyan, on Thursday sparked a row with his allegations that fake votes were being cast by women clad in burqas in the first phase of polling for the Lok Sabha election that started at 7 AM.
Balyan is up against Rashtriya Lok Dal (RLD) chief Ajit Singh who is the candidate of the SP-BSP-RLD's grand alliance in Uttar Pradesh, which sends 80 MPs to Lok Sabha.
“Faces of women in burkhas are not being checked and I allege that fake voting is being done. If not looked into, I will demand a repoll," Balyan told ANI.
Union Minister and Muzaffarnagar BJP candidate Dr. Sanjiv Balyan: Faces of women in burkhas are not being checked and I allege that fake voting is being done. If not looked into, I will demand a repoll pic.twitter.com/Gphlm2NoRx
— ANI UP (@ANINewsUP) April 11, 2019
It may be recalled that on Tuesday the Uttar Pradesh Chief Electoral Officer (CEO) had sought a report from Muzaffarnagar district magistrate into a complaint against Balyan for allegedly “threatening voters” at a public meeting.
The complaint against Balyan was lodged by RLD, which has also attached a video of the BJP leader’s speech. In the controversial speech, the BJP leader can be heard saying that he will settle scores with alleged “criminals” campaigning against him.
Muzaffarnagar Lok Sabha constituency comprises of five assembly segments namely, Budhana, Charthawal, Muzaffarnagar, Khatauli and Sardhana.
In 2014 Lok Sabha election, Balyan won by defeating his closest rival Bahujan Samaj Party's Kadir Rana by a margin of 4,01,150 votes. While Balyan bagged 6,53,391 votes, Rana won 2,52,241 votes.
In 2014, 72.69 per cent or 11,07,765 voters in Muzaffarnagar exercised their franchise. A total of 19 candidates were in the fray and the deposits of 17 of them were forfeited.