Bribery charge: AIADMK candidate demands disqualification of K. N. Nehru

AIADMK Tiruchi west candidate V. Padmanathan giving a complaint latter to the DRO against DMK candidate K. N. Nehru on Sunday.   | Photo Credit: SRINATH M

AIADMK candidate of Tiruchi (West) constituency V. Padmanathan on Sunday lodged a complaint against former Minister and DMK candidate K. N. Nehru with Collector and District Election Officer S. Divyadharshini, demanding disqualification of his candidature by the Election Commission of India, for having bribed policemen in the city.

“It is shocking that law enforcers who are supposed to ensure free and fair poll were bribed at every police stations. I have not come across such a practice. It is a serious matter. The Election Commission should take immediate action on it,” Mr. Padmanathan told The Hindu.

Citing the suspension of six policemen, including an Inspector, and filing of a case against a lawyer in the bribery issue, Mr. Padmanathan demanded that Mr. Nehru be booked immediately.

Mr. Padmanathan said that the issue had raised a serious question on the impartiality of policemen in conducting the poll in Tiruchi. Mr. Nehru, who had lost the confidence of voters in his constituency, had planned to capture the polling booths and distribute cash to the voters. “Without police protection election is impossible. But how are we to trust them when they are bribed,” Mr. Padmanathan questioned.

Mr. Nehru, however, dismissed the charges in a letter addressed to the Chief Electoral Officer, Tamil Nadu.

On Saturday evening, acting on information that bribe was being given to law enforcers ahead of the polls, special teams headed by senior officers in the rank of an Assistant Commissioner of Police conducted checks in the Government Hospital police station and at the Thillai Nagar police station and found several covers containing cash amounting to thousands of rupees.

Police sources said about 23 covers containing cash were recovered from the Government Hospital police station and 12 covers from the Thillai Nagar police station. Cash amounting to ₹70,000 were seized during the searches conducted at both police stations falling under the Tiruchi West Assembly constituency from where Mr. Nehru is seeking a re-election after having won in the 2016 assembly polls.

Sources said searches were conducted in all the 14 police stations falling under the city police limits but covers containing cash were found only in two of the stations. The case against the police personnel was booked by the City Crime Branch on a complaint lodged by a senior police officer in the rank of an Assistant Commissioner of Police under IPC section 171 (e) (bribery) and under section 129 (3) of The Representation of People Act.

Among the six police personnel suspended in connection with the incident were an Inspector of Police of Thillai Nagar station; a Sub Inspector of Government Hospital police station, a Special Sub Inspector of Government Hospital police station and a Woman Head Constable attached to Thillai Nagar police station besides two other personnel serving in the City Intelligence Section tasked with looking after Government Hospital police station and Thillai Nagar police station. Orders placing the six police personnel under suspension were issued on Saturday following the incident.

With the case having been transferred to the Crime Branch CID, the files connected with the case would be handed over to the investigating agency for further probe.

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Printable version | Sep 16, 2021 5:43:52 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Tiruchirapalli/bribery-charge-aiadmk-candidate-demands-disqualification-of-k-n-nehru/article34184172.ece

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