Election commission of India(ECI) is keen on knowing the progress of investigation into the cash-for-vote scam that is rocking the states of Andhra Pradesh and Telangana following the arrest of TDP MLA Revanth Reddy.
The commission has reportedly instructed Banwarlal, the Chief Electoral Officer of Andhra and Telangana, to keep it posted with the progress of the investigation on day-to-day basis.
The commission is taking the case as a model one as it is for the first time that an MLA was arrested while offering money to another MLA to influence his voting and a chief minister of another state is involved. Even though cash-for-vote scams are not uncommon, catching the MLA red-handed has never happened in history of Independent India, said a senior functionary with the ECI.
“This is going to be a model case for us. We are closely watching the case and its investigation. Everything depends on the outcome of the ACB court,” the functionary told Telugu360.com.
The election commission has filed petition in the court urging it to provide information regarding the cash-for-vote scam.
However, ACB denied it stating that it could part with information only after court decides on the case.
Regarding the disqualification of the MLAs involved in the crimes, the EC sources said, ” the disqualification is made automatic after the court conviction. A 2013 Supreme Court judgment made the disqualification automatic after conviction of the MLA by the court,” the sources said.
Meanwhile, the commission directed the district collectors and respective political parties ensure that all MPTC ( Mandal Parishat Territorial Constituency) member from leaving district without permission in the run up to the Election to the Legislative Council of Andhra Pradesh. Commission also asked the collectors to keep watch on the activities of political parties in order prevent holding of MPTCs in camps. The commission informed the parties that the expenditure incurred in running the camps would be added to the election expenditure and initiate steps to disqualify the members if it is found exceeding the limits.
Election commission issued these instructions following the complaints from YSR Congress against TDP’s attempts to buy it MPTC members with money in Prakasham and Nellore districts. YSRC alleged that TDP was buying the MPTCs by offering upto Rs 3 lakh per vote in the on going Legislative Council election. The polling is scheduled on July 3, 2015