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Odishatv Bureau

BHUBANESWAR:  Alleging that the BJP has utilised money power to influence voters during the panchayat polls, the BJD on Monday said the saffron party leaders of Jharkhand and Chhattisgarh are distributing money among the voters of Western Odisha.

The BJD had filed a complaint at the State Election Commission (SEC) in this regard on February 15. The allegation has turned out to be true, said BJD Spokesperson Pratap Deb here today.

He pointed out that police recovered hard cash and Chhattisgarh vehicle from Thuamula-Rampur area of Kalahandi district and Papadahandi of Nabrangpur district on Monday. The cops have also detained a person in this connection, who is said to be a friend of a BJP leader of Chhattisgarh, he said, adding that this has confirmed that the saffron party leaders of Chhattisgarh have distributed money among the western Odisha voters.

He said that the BJP adopted the tactic of distributing money and threatening voters for the first time. However, the BJD has given and would continue to give a befitting reply, he added.

In reaction to the allegation made by the BJD, BJP Spokesperson Sajjan Sharma said former minister and BJD leader Sarada Nayak has been detained twice for distributing money in Rourkela. He questioned that had Chhatisgarh government given money to BJD leader Sarada Nayak to distribute money to the voters? He further stated that the BJD is trying to put the blame on the Chhattisgarh government for its defeat in the panchayat elections.

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