Former Union Minister and Muzaffarnagar BJP candidate Sanjeev Balyan on Thursday alleged "fake voting" in his Lok Sabha constituency, claiming that faces of "burqa-clad" voters were not being verified by poll officials. "Faces of women in burqa are not being checked and I allege that fake voting is taking place," Balyan told ANI after casting his ballot.
He also said that he will demand a re-poll if his concerns are not addressed. The former minister is seeking a re-election from the constituency. Rashtriya Lok Dal chief Ajit Singh is also a contender from Muzaffarnagar, a communally sensitive seat in western Uttar Pradesh.
The constituency gained notoriety in the aftermath of the Muzaffarnagar riots in 2013. Muslims constitute the single biggest electorate in the constituency. The Dalit community has the second biggest chunk of voters. Jats, who dominate the landscape of western UP, are also influential in the constituency. Voting for the first phase of general elections is underway for eight out of the 80 Lok Sabha seats in UP. Counting of votes will take place on May 23.
(With inputs from agencies.)