Ahmedabad: Verbal trading during polls hardly makes news, but when the acrimony turns out to be a tamasha of sorts, it grabs the headlines. So was it on late Tuesday night when cops and EC officials had to dash to the Rifle Club in a bid to prevent violation of model code of conduct.
Election commission officials got a call from Congress MLA from Shahpur, Gyasuddin Shaikh at around 10 pm who complained about a meeting held at the club located in Shahpur area, where the attendees allegedly included a few dubious characters. He also called up the police control room and the returning officer of the Dariapur constituency. When DNA called up Shaikh to confirm the news, the MLA said, “I got to know that some people associated with dubious activities like gambling and bootlegging had gathered at the Rifle Club and BJP leader, Bharat Barot was also present at the meet. I, therefore, informed the police control room and the election officer. When the official visited the club, all these people had to run away from the place.”
DNA also talked to BJP MLA from Dariapur-Kazipur, Bharat Barot to get his reaction. Referring to Shaikh’s complaint as an act of sheer frustration, Barot said, “It was Diwali get-together of small group of people at a private place. I had gone there but very late. I have not yet been declared as a candidate by the party for this election. So, how would my attending a private get-together amount to violation of code of conduct? Shaikh is a frustrated soul and is not leaving any opportunity to create an issue. His complaint to the election commission is an example of this. His frustrations stem from his party supporters’ demanding a ‘No Repeat’ against him in his constituency.”
However, the video grab that the poll officials have taken of the spot as well as the fleeing attendants will reveal the truth.