BJP Moves ECI Against Sujata Karthikeyan

Bhubaneswar: The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) on Wednesday lodged a formal complaint with the Election Commission of India (ECI) against senior IAS officer Sujata R Karthikeyan, alleging her involvement in obstructing free and fair elections and inciting violence in Odisha.

In a memorandum submitted to the ECI, the BJP urged immediate action against Sujata, either by transferring her out of Odisha or suspending her, to ensure the integrity of the state’s electoral process.

The BJP’s complaint asserts that Sujata, along with IPS officers DS Kutey and Ashish Kumar Singh, is operating under the alleged directions of BJD leader V K Pandian, who is also Sujata’s husband, and Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik. They claim that this trio’s actions violate All India Services (Conduct) Rules and electoral laws, despite clear directives from the ECI.

The BJP alleges that Sujata has been actively involved in electoral malpractices and instigating violence during both Lok Sabha and Assembly elections in Odisha. Despite previous directives from the ECI and her subsequent transfer to a non-public-facing role, the complaint asserts that Sujata continued to interfere with the electoral process.

Notably, the ECI had previously instructed the Odisha government to transfer Sujata from her position as commissioner-cum-secretary of the Department of Mission Shakti to a role in the Finance Department. This decision came after repeated allegations from the Odisha BJP that Sujata was misusing her position to influence SHG women to vote for the BJD.

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