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Business News/ Politics / News/  Chandigarh mayor election row: Police use water cannons against protesting youth Congress activists
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Chandigarh mayor election row: Police use water cannons against protesting youth Congress activists

NSUI workers protested against the BJP over the January 30 mayoral elections after the Supreme Court criticised the presiding officer for defacing ballot papers.

Police use water cannons to disperse NSUI workers protesting against the BJP over the January 30 mayoral elections, in Chandigarh. (PTI)Premium
Police use water cannons to disperse NSUI workers protesting against the BJP over the January 30 mayoral elections, in Chandigarh. (PTI)

Police on Wednesday used water cannons against Congress student wing members who were protesting against the Chandigarh mayor election results outside the Bharatiya Janata Party's (BJP) office.

The National Students' Union of India (NSUI) workers were protesting against the BJP over the January 30 mayoral elections. The Supreme Court had rapped presiding officer Anil Masih, observing that it was obvious that he defaced the ballot papers and that he should be prosecuted, adding his action amounted to "murder and mockery" of democracy.

On Monday, the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) shared three CCTV videos on their X account as proof to claim that the presiding officer openly destroyed and invalidated votes in the Chandigarh Mayor polls, at the behest of the BJP.

The AAP, while sharing the videos on X, wrote, "Now accept it, BJP. What can be a greater proof than this? See how the Presiding Officer of the BJP openly destroyed the flag of democracy by cancelling the votes himself. This is a living proof of BJP's dictatorship."

The footage allegedly shows Masih tampering with the ballot papers and BJP councillors directing the camerapersons to pan away, supposedly in an attempt to aid him.

Meanwhile, both AAP and Congress workers have been staging several protests against the BJP in Chandigarh. AAP leader SS Ahluwalia said that the party leaders are on a hunger strike. "The protest will continue until there is accountability for Anil Masih, and the imposter mayor is removed."

During a protest, AAP convenor and Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal said, "We used to listen that BJP wins elections by stealing votes, rigging EVMs, but we never got any evidence of it. The Chandigarh Mayoral elections show that their (BJP's) vessel of sins was full to the brim."

With a combined strength of 20 councillors in a 35-member Municipal Corporation House of Chandigarh, the AAP and the Congress were sure of a win. The BJP had 14 councillors and one vote of the Chandigarh MP, who is the ex-officio member of the House. While sole Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD) councillor had demanded the none-of-the-above (NOTA) option, although, his request was declined.

However, when the results of the mayor poll were declared, the BJP received 16 votes, the INDIA bloc candidates got 12 votes and eight were declared invalid.

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Published: 07 Feb 2024, 03:45 PM IST
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