Hyderabad: Bereft of any tangible issue to pin down the ruling TRS, the BJP in the State is increasingly getting drawn into a whirlpool of lies and slander, the latest being the Siddipet money seizure case.
Siddipet Police Commissioner D Joel Davis has repeatedly asserted that all the procedures required for search were followed. He also released all the evidences including video footage of Monday’s search of the residence of Surabhi Anjan Rao, a close relative of BJP candidate for Dubbak by-poll M Raghunandan Rao, the seizure of Rs 18.67 lakh money, the subsequent attack by BJP activists on the police and their snatching away the seized money, which should put the saffron party in a tight spot.
Raghunandan Rao himself was on the backfoot when he spoke to the media post the seizure, distancing himself from Anjan Rao and the money seized, this despite the latter clearly stating that the cash was meant for distribution among the public ahead of the by-poll on November 3. The executive magistrate V Vijay Sagar, who led the search after issuing due notice to Anjan Rao, categorically stated in his complaint with the police that the money was ‘robbed’ by a group of BJP workers under provocation from Raghunandan Rao.
Given the factual position of the case and the BJP candidate trying to steer clear of trouble by disowning his close relative and the money seized, the State BJP leadership’s attempts to paint the raid as a police ploy to plant the money in Anjan Rao’s house has fallen flat. What flummoxes one is the litany of lies in the letter written to the Chief Electoral Officer on Tuesday claiming police harassment of Raghunandan Rao’s relatives including his father-in-law Surabhi Ram Gopal Rao, and “a clear attempt to kill Bandi Sanjay Kumar (State BJP president)” by the police in the process of sending him back to Karimnagar from Siddipet. Writing about police bias is one thing, but to accuse them of trying to kill the party president is pushing their luck a bit too far.
The BJP’s pre-poll drama, scripted to generate public sympathy, has found no takers, with even the Congress writing to the Chief Election Commissioner seeking action against the BJP indulging in money power and slamming Union Minister of State for Home G Kishan Reddy for rushing to Siddipet in support of the party candidate.
The BJP leadership’s actions only raise more questions about their intentions, and speak volumes of the party’s frustration. Why isn’t there any mention of Anjan Rao in the BJP memorandum to the State CEO? Why did Kishan Reddy make a quiet exit from Siddipet after rushing there in the wake of the cash seizure? Why did Raghunandan Rao rush to Anjan Rao’s residence when he came to know of the cash seizure if he has nothing to do with the latter? What is the exact purpose of Sanjay’s ‘Deeksha’ in Karimnagar? These are some of the questions that the BJP will have to answer if it has to retain any political credibility with the people.
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