Bhubaneswar: The Biju Janata Dal (BJD) Thursday moved the office of the Chief Electoral Officer demanding strict video surveillance of all petrol pumps and gas stations during elections.
The party delegation met the State Election Commission and expressed apprehensions about the misuse of petrol pumps and gas stations across Odisha for election-related works, and demanded that the poll panel should order strict video surveillance to prevent such offences.
The delegation comprised party leaders Debashish Samantray, Kalikesh Singh Deo, Pushpendra Singh Deo and Sasmit Patra.
The delegation expressed concern about Union Petroleum Minister Dharmendra Pradhan trying to misuse petrol pumps and gas stations. The BJD believes such centres could be used to disburse and hoard cash for distribution during elections.
In its memorandum, the BJD said that during the Bijepur by-elections despite repeated demands no action was taken against Pradhan and the people who were involved in illegal acts.
“We hope the same will not be repeated this time and all mala fide activities will be curbed by ensuring strict video vigilance in petrol pumps and gas stations,” the memorandum said.
“We hope you will ensure strict surveillance of all petrol pumps and gas agencies and provide the voters of Odisha a free and fair election,” the memorandum added.
Attacking Pradhan, the BJD said in the memorandum, “Odisha politics hit a new low after Dharmendra Pradhan became Union Petroleum and Natural Gas Minister. He is known for misusing petroleum companies, their organisations and processes as well as officers, petrol pumps and gas agencies for political purposes.”