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Cong, BJP spar over NOTA option on polling day in Indore

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NewsDrum Desk
New Update

Indore, May 13 (PTI) The Congress accused the ruling BJP government in Madhya Pradesh of stopping it from publicising the None Of The Above (NOTA) option in Indore, where polling was held on Monday in the fourth and final phase of the general elections in the state.

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Dismissing the allegation, the BJP said the Congress was talking "nonsense" to hide its failure after its candidate withdrew from the fray.

The Congress campaign focussed on asking voters to press the NOTA option in the EVMs after its nominee, Akshay Kanti Bam, withdrew from the fray and joined the BJP.

Talking to reporters, Congress president Surjit Singh Chadha said, "When we sought permission from the local authorities to campaign for NOTA via hoardings and FM radio, we were asked to approach the Bhopal-based State Election Commission for the nod." He alleged that a BJP woman corporator recently tore a poster calling the electorate to press the NOTA option, and the development was reported on social media.

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The Congress had put up tables near three polling booths, which were removed at the behest of the BJP, Chadha claimed.

NOTA was incorporated as an option in the EVMs in September 2013 to empower voters in the expression of their choice.

State BJP spokesperson Narendra Saluja said Congress leaders don't understand that the EC grants permission for campaigns, as the model code of conduct is in force, and the BJP has nothing to do with it.

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The Congress was talking nonsense to hide its failure after its candidate pulled out of the race, he said.

Meanwhile, local BJP MLA Malini Laxman Singh reached a polling booth at Ramakrishna Bagh in the Gaur Dhar Road area and accused a woman officer of asking voters to press the "NOTA" button.

In another incident, the police had to pacify workers of the Congress and BJP after they allegedly clashed over the NOTA option outside a polling booth in Nanda Nagar. PTI HWP LAL ARU

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