Jagdalpur: The entire expenditure on Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s public meeting at Lalbagh here on November 9 – three days before first phase of polling for the Assembly elections in Chhattisgarh – has been added to the poll expense accounts of nine BJP candidates, who had shared the dais with Modi. They were: Mahesh Gagda, Bheema Mandavi, Dhaniram Barse, Santosh Bafna, Lacchuram Kashyap, Dr Subhash Kashyap, Lata Usendi, Kedar Kashyap and Harishankar Netam.
The Election Commission said that according to its estimates, Rs 34,83,507 must have been spent on holding the event. Normally, the expenditure would have gone into the BJP’s account. However, as the candidates were present at the dais, it was divided equally among them. Rs 3,87,056 were added to the expense account of each of them.
There is a ceiling of Rs 28 lakh on campaign expenses.
Congressmen play safe
In contrast, Congress candidates scrupulously kept away from the dais at the party chief Rahul Gandhi’s public meeting at the same venue a couple of days back. And their pictures were also nowhere to be seen. Hence, the expenses were not added to their accounts.