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UP polls: BJP slams Akhilesh for asking electors to take money but vote

Lucknow: The Bharatiya Janata Party on Sunday lashed out at Akhilesh Yadav for “hurting” the dignity of the Chief Minister’s post by making a “frivolous” statement that voters should accept money from other parties but cast their ballot for the Samajwadi Party.

Reacting strongly to Akhilesh’s remarks, BJP state General Secretary Vijay Bahadur Pathak said, “It seems that the UP CM is indulging in hollow talk.”

“His frivolous statement which appeals to the voters that they may take money from different political parties, but vote for SP’s ‘bicycle’ symbol has undoubtedly hurt the dignity and sanctity of the CM’s post,” he further said.

It is because of such acts and faulty policies of the state government in the past five years that the funds sent by the Centre to UP could not be spent, he told reporters here.

“Apart from this, law and order machinery has collapsed in the state and ‘jungle raj’ prevails throughout it,” he said.

Addressing an election rally in Bhadohi on Saturday, Akhilesh had said, “I have heard that voters are being given money. My advice to you is to keep the money with you and vote for the bicycle symbol.”

Earlier, Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar had been let off with a light rap by the Election Commission when he made a similar remark that he had no problem with people accepting money from other parties to attend their rallies but that they should vote for the BJP.

The EC, which took cognisance of the matter, had asked Parrikar to be more circumspect and careful while making any statement in future when the Model Code of Conduct is in operation.

The EC advisory pertained to allegations that he abetted the offence of bribery during a speech ahead of the Goa Assembly polls.

The EC had earlier directed registration of an FIR against Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal for asking voters in Goa to accept money from other parties, but vote for AAP which was testing its popularity in the coastal state.

PTI