Campaigning at high pitch in Thrikkakara

The LDF and the UDF traded charges against each other as public campaigning ahead of the Thrikkakara byelection reached fever pitch on Saturday.

Leader of the Opposition V.D. Satheesan alleged that around 3,000 new voters enrolled by the Congress out of the total 6,000 did not figure in the final voters’ list. Accusing the CPI(M) of trying to resort to bogus voting, Mr. Satheesan said a CPI(M) worker in booth 161 had included his name as parent in five ‘fake votes’.

Mr. Satheesan warned those trying to cast bogus votes while saying that they should be ready to go to jail. On the issue of the fake video on the LDF candidate, he alleged that two of the three arrested for circulating the video were CPI(M) workers.

Minister for Industries P. Rajeeve accused Mr. Satheesan of having lowered his stature as Leader of the Opposition for his comments that the CPI(M) had a history of creating such videos while recalling the hidden camera controversy related to the party. There is opposition from within the Congress against the fake video, he said.

BJP leader Suresh Gopi who toured the constituency in support of party candidate A.N. Radhakrishnan said the fake video controversy was scripted by the CPI(M).

On action taken against former legislator P.C. George in the hate speech issue, Mr. Gopi asked if the Chief Minister showed equal eagerness to arrest others in similar cases, referring to allegations of delay in arresting Popular Front of India workers in connection with its Alappuzha rally.

Jignesh Mevani, Congress MLA from Gujarat, who campaigned for UDF candidate Uma Thomas, criticised the LDF government for appreciating the Gujarat model of governance. Recalling the visit of Chief Secretary V.P. Joy to study e-governance in Gujarat, which is ruled by the BJP, Mr. Mevani said the visit was surprising, as not even Chief Ministers of other BJP-ruled States had visited Gujarat to study its governance model. “The Gujarat model of development is a humbug,” he alleged.

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Printable version | Jun 13, 2022 6:12:41 pm | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Kochi/campaigning-at-high-pitch-in-thrikkakara/article65470156.ece