In a press conference, Bhaichung Bhutia, Former football captain and Sikkim Democratic Front (SDF) vice-president accused Chief Minister Prem Singh Tamang and his party, Sikkim Krantikari Morcha (SKM), of orchestrating voter fraud during the 2019 elections.
Bhutia, who as reported, inadvertently supported these actions while backing SKM, now claims a recurrence of the practice, suggesting a surge of 28,000 voters.
Promising a stringent crackdown on fake voters, Bhutia outlined SDF’s approach, emphasizing the requirement of Residential Certificates or Certificate of Identification.
He further expressed concern about the impact on general seat voters and addressed the influx of individuals from pharmaceutical and other companies, pledging to implement proper work permits.
Moreover, the former footballer highlighted the protection afforded to the Bhutia and Lepcha communities by tribal laws and certificates.
Bhutia criticized the One Nation One Ration Card system’s effects in Sikkim and asserted that only SDF, through legislative action, could counteract these issues.
Taking a swipe at Chief Minister Golay, Bhutia questioned his legitimacy, linking it to a pending Supreme Court case.
Furthermore, he speculated on BJP’s role in the 2024 elections, suggesting that SKM might need to sacrifice seats for BJP to allow Golay to contest, or risk disqualification by the BJP.
Bhaichung Bhutia’s accusations add a political dimension to the Sikkim elections, with implications for Chief Minister Golay’s legitimacy and the potential influence of the BJP in the upcoming electoral landscape.