Bhubaneswar, Feb 15:
The Odisha units of the BJP and BJD on Wednesday knocked at the door of the State Election Commission (SEC) with charges of poll code violation against each other in the ongoing panchayat poll campaign in the state.
The Bharatiya Janata Party alleged that four bureaucrats at the State Secretariat are managing the three-tier panchayat polls for the ruling Biju Janata Dal.
In its memorandum, the BJP alleged that BJD President and Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik is grossly violating the Model Code of Conduct and misusing power by engaging the four bureaucrats in remote-controlling the panchayat polls.
“The collectors and Superintendents of Police along with the lower rung district level officials are being misused for tilting the poll results in favour of the ruling BJD,” said BJP spokesperson Sajjan Sharma.
It also levelled allegations of poll code violation against BJD MP Anubhav Mohanty, saying that he misused the helicopter meant for the government use during panchayat poll campaigning.
On the other hand, the ruling BJD levelled allegations against Union Petroleum minister Dharmendra Pradhan for violating the Model Code of Conduct by publicly threatening the government machinery engaged in the conduct of elections.
“Pradhan, being a minister in the Union Cabinet, has alleged that the District Election Officers and Collectors and SPs are functioning as Presidents and Secretaries of the ruling party. He has publicly threatened that after the elections are over, a commission shall be set up to punish such officials,” said the BJD memorandum.
By threatening government officers engaged in election duty Pradhan has not only violated the Model Code of Conduct but also tried to create an atmosphere of threat and fear which may prevent the officials from functioning in a free and fair manner in the ensuing elections, the memorandum added. (IANS)