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Rajya Sabha poll: CBI charges three with horse trading

Jharkhand,Politics, Fri, 20 Apr 2012 IANS

Ranchi, April 20 (IANS) The CBI Thursday night filed a formal complaint against three people for allegedly horse trading ahead of the March 30 Rajya Sabha poll in Jharkhand, an official said.


The poll was countermanded after Rs.2.15 crore in cash was seized from a car belonging to a candidate's brother. However, no legislator or candidate has been named in the first information report (FIR).


"The FIR has been registered on a complaint lodged in Ranchi's Namkum police station regarding the recovery of the cash," a CBI (Central Bureau of Investigation) official who did not want to be identified told IANS. The official said names of legislators and candidates might be added to the FIR during the course of the investigation.


The seized cash, the CBI official says, was probably meant to buy votes of legislators. The car carrying the money belonged to Suresh Agrawal, brother of R.K. Agrawal, who was an independent candidate in the poll.


The Jharkhand High Court, while hearing a petition, had asked the Election Commission (EC) to get the horse-trading charges probed by a central agency such as the CBI.


The Election Commission will now hold a fresh poll May 3 for the two Rajya Sabha seats from the state.


Meanwhile, Jharkhand Chief Minister Arjun Munda Thursday sought a CBI probe into the 2010 Rajya Sabha polls too. That year, in a TV channel's sting operation, four legislators were allegedly caught demanding money for votes.


Two of the accused legislators were from the Jharkhand Mukti Morcha and the other two from the Bharatiya Janata Party and the Congress. The state vigilance department was asked to verify the allegations.


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