Leh Bribery Case: In what could provide fresh ammunition to the Opposition to target the ruling party in the ongoing campaign for Lok Sabha elections, an FIR has been filed against Jammu and Kashmir unit of the BJP Ravinder Raina and legislator Vikram Randhawa for allegedly trying to bribe journalists in Leh, Ladakh.
The case has been filed against the BJP leaders after a group of journalists claimed that they distributed envelopes with cash after a press conference in Leh on May 2. The CCTV video of the press briefing held at a hotel in Leh had gone viral.
The video purportedly shows Raina handing over envelopes to a few journalists.
BJP rubbishes allegations
The BJP, however, has rubbished the allegations and said the leaders were actually distributing invites for Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharaman’s election rally. The party said it will sue the journalists for false claims and has also formed as panel to investigate the case.
The CCTV grab being circulated on the social media is of the invitation envelopes being given to reporters for the coverage of Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharaman’s visit to Leh on May 4. This is being shown as if money is being given to them, Randhawa said. The authenticity of the CCTV video could not be verified independently.
Meanwhile, Raina said he would move an application in Jammu and Kashmir High Court seeking narco-test of journalists and BJP leaders including him. “If anybody from the party is found involved, he will be dealt severely,” Raina told PTI.
Describing the whole episode as ‘politically motivated’, Rain said he will file defamation case against the journalists who have levelled the allegations.
Voting in Ladakh was held in the fifth phase of Lok Sabha elections in May 6. The BJP had won Ladakh seat by just 36 votes in 2014.