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Ramakanta Biswas

A purported video of some BJD leaders allegedly distributing cash to voters in Malkangiri district ahead of the crucial three-tier Panchayat polls has gone viral, prompting the Opposition to launch a scathing attack on the ruling party.

The viral video that is making rounds on several social media platforms was reportedly shot during a meeting at Tatiguda village under Kalimela block of Malkangiri district. In the video, a BJD leader is purportedly seen pulling out some cash from his pocket and distributing among people gathered around.   

Soon after the viral video surfaced, both opposition BJP and Congress wasted no time and sharpened their attack on the BJD for allegedly violating the model code of conduct. 

The BJP moved the State Election Commission (SEC) terming it a blatant violation of the model code of conduct and demanded adequate action.

“BJD functionaries openly disbursed cash among voters at Tatiguda village under Gumuka panchayat of Kalimela zone-3. We have urged the Collector and the election commission to look into the matter and nullify candidature of the BJD candidates who are involved in such illegal practices,” said BJP leader Balabhadra Majhi.  

The Congress party also followed the suit and demanded action against the BJD leaders for alleged violation of the election code. The party also alleged that some police personnel, doctors and government officials in the district have engaged themselves in campaigning for the ruling BJD. 

“Though the model code of conduct is in force, the State government and its officials are not abiding by it. Government officials cannot take part in the campaigning. However, in many blocks of Malkangiri, government officials are engaged in campaigning in blatant violation of the election guidelines,” alleged Congress leader Bhujabal Majhi.  

Reacting to the allegations of the opposition parties, BJD leader Rajendra Panda said, “As per the tradition of the tribal people, they offer small amounts like Rs 50 or Rs 100 for putting tilak on forehead. We are not like them (Opposition), who distribute Rs 2000 notes to woo voters. We have nothing to say on the false allegations.”

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