Five census officials who were actually a BJP’s women’s wing activists were detained by the police for trying to con residents of Siddapura into parting with their voter ID cards.
In an FIR, Siddapura residents alleged that these BJP activists campaigning for the civic polls in a Muslim dominated area of Bengaluru made an effort to steal voter ID cards.
“Five women came into my house around 5pm and told me they were from the census department. They asked me to show them my voting card. When I showed them the card, they said it was no longer valid and tried to take it away,” Shamsunissa (62) told HT which results in tension in the area when hundreds gheraon the women activists however police escorted them to the safety.
Shamsunissa said that just when she was questioning the women, dozens of men from her locality barged into the house shouting “chor-chor” (thief).
“The men asked the women for their ID cards and there was confusion. After a few minutes, the women started crying and confessed that they were BJP workers,” she said.
The BJP women activists wrote down names and phone numbers in cases where people declined to part with their voter ID cards, alleged Tabrez Suhail (32), one of the men who barged into Shamsunissa’s house, told HT.
On the other hand, a senior official of the Siddapura police station on condition of anonymity said that no voter ID cards was recovered from the women.
R Khaleemullah, from the Association for Protection of Civil Rights (APCR), who visited the spot, said, “Names of Muslims, other minorities and SCs had gone missing from the electoral rolls during the last Assembly and Lok Sabha polls as well.”
Several groups had alleged that the BJP was paying people to part with their voters IDs. “This is the first time we have caught them red handed,” he said.
BJP spokesperson S Prakash told HT, “I have no idea abt the incident to react to it.”