Telangana Assembly Elections: An independent candidate, who was contesting the Telangana Assembly elections from Nizamabad Urban constituency, allegedly died by suicide linked to an online 'sextortion' attempt by cyber fraudsters, said police on Sunday. These fraudsters had allegedly threatened to upload the video of the candidate on social media.
Demanded Rs 10 lakh
According to the police, the people involved in cyber fraud demanded a sum of Rs 10 lakh from the 30-year-old, threatening to share a video of him taken during a video call with a woman, along with his nomination paper, on social media platforms. The fraudsters had recorded the video call he had with the woman, police said.
The candidate was found hanging from the ceiling fan in his residence in Nizamabad town on Saturday night, as reported by his family members. A senior police official mentioned that he had received a message on Friday from an unidentified number on his mobile, which featured a woman's profile picture on an instant messaging app. After that, he started a conversation with the woman that was followed by a video call between them.
Cyber fraudsters share "nude" pictures
Subsequently, he received a call from another person who demanded Rs 10 lakh and warned that if the amount was not paid, recordings of his video call with the woman, as well as his nomination paper, would be posted on social media.
After he refused to pay the money, the caller proceeded to share a part of the video, along with his nomination paper, indicating that it was being uploaded on social media. Additionally, the caller sent some "nude" pictures. Distraught by these actions, he purportedly took the extreme step, the official said.
In response to a complaint filed by the candidate's family members, the police registered a case under the Indian Penal Code (IPC) sections 306 (abetment of suicide) and 384 (extortion). Ongoing investigations are being conducted, as stated by the police.
Will election postponed in Nizamabad Urban constituency?
Meanwhile, official sources said that the election in the constituency will not be postponed.
Sitting MLA, BRS candidate Bigala Ganesh Gupta, Congress candidate Mohammad Ali Shabbir, and BJP nominee Dhanpal Suryanarayana Gupta are in the fray from the Nizamabad urban Assembly constituency.
Assembly elections in Telangana will be held on November 30. The counting of votes for the Telangana Assembly will be held along with those of four other poll-bound states on December 3.
In the previous Assembly election in 2018, the Bharat Rashtra Samithi (BRS), previously known as Telangana Rashtra Samithi (TRS), won 88 of the 119 seats, hogging 47.4 per cent of the total vote share. The Congress came in a distant second with just 19 seats.
(With PTI inputs)