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MP cries foul over ‘missing’ name

Staff Correspondent
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Shantha votes after being told her name is listed in a different ward

UPSET:J. Shantha, MP, complaining about her name missing from the voters' list in ward 34in Bellary on Thursday.
UPSET:J. Shantha, MP, complaining about her name missing from the voters' list in ward 34in Bellary on Thursday.

J. Shantha, Bellary MP and sister of B. Sriramulu, founder president of the BSR Congress, on Thursday cried foul saying her name was missing from the voters list and created a scene by saying that it was an attempt to deprive her of her voting rights. She accused Amlan Aditya Biswas, Deputy Commissioner and district Election Officer, of masterminding it.

However, the authorities clarified that her name was on the electoral rolls, but she had gone to a different ward to cast her vote.

It started with Mr. Sriramulu, speaking to mediapersons after voting, said that he was pained to know that Ms. Shantha’s name was missing from the voters list. “I do not wish to attribute any motive, but one thing is certain that the Deputy Commissioner’s action is not fair. Mr. Biswas probably wants to be good to many by targeting me and my family,” he said.

Later, Ms. Shantha, addressing a press conference, said that the voters list for ward number 34 contained her photograph but the name had been wrongly printed. “I went to vote and I was shocked when I was informed that my name was not on the voters list. On verification, it was found that the name of Thippamma had been printed under my photograph. If this is the plight of an MP, then the fate of others can be imagined,” she said.

After coming to know that her vote was in ward number one under serial number 15, Ms. Shantha told presspersons that she would vote only in ward number 34. “After March 11, I will undertake a tour of the district to highlight how a woman belonging to an oppressed class is being humiliated by the authorities, besides lodging a complaint to the Election Commission in this regard,” she said.

D.L. Narayan, Municipal Commissioner, clarified that during the revision of ward areas, Ms. Shantha’s official residence, which was earlier the designated quarters of the chief executive officer of the zilla panchayat, came under ward number one. Accordingly, her name and that of her husband were on the relevant list.

Meanwhile, Mr. Biswas, in a written clarification, a copy of which was marked to the State Election Commission, has said that the MP had made wild and baseless allegations against the authorities.

The matter would be brought to the notice of the Parliamentary Secretariat for further action, he said.

Anti-climax

Ms. Shantha, who appeared firm on her decision, however, voted in ward number one, keeping everybody, including the media, in the dark.

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