States & UTs

    Election bribery case: Kerala court speaks tough, tells state BJP chief Surendran and others to appear

    Pankaj Sharma
    September12/ 2023
    Last Updated:

    Thiruvananthapuram: A court in Kerala on Tuesday expressed its displeasure in the way state BJP president K.Surendran and others, who have been named as accused in an election bribery case, have not turned up before it.

    Apart from Surendran, five more local BJP leaders have also been included as accused.

    The Kasargod district and sessions court took a strong view and asked all to appear before it on September 21, expressing its strong displeasure that none of them as yet have come before the court and this is not acceptable.

    The Crime Branch, probing this case, submitted its charge sheet in January this year.

    The case was based on a petition filed by CPI-M leader V.V. Rameshan, an LDF candidate from Manjeswaram constituency during the April 2021 Assembly elections.

    When votes were counted, Surendran came a close second to the Congress-led UDF candidate who won the election by a margin of 745 votes.

    The petitioner demanded the arrest of BJP leaders who allegedly paid money, gave mobile phones and promised other favours to BSP candidate K. Sundara to withdraw his nomination from Manjeswaram during the elections. Sundara later alleged that he was given money and mobile to withdraw his candidature in favour of Surendran.

    The probe police team which has submitted its preliminary report included charges under the SC/ST Act, besides others which included bribery to sabotage elections too.