Labour and Liberal Democrats are at each other's throats in Birmingham again over alleged ballot rigging in Aston at last week's city council elections.
Both parties reported their opponents to the West Midlands Police Economic Crime Unit after claims that men at a hostel were forced to apply for postal ballots and to vote for Liberal Democrat councillor Ayoub Khan.
Labour acted after residents said they were put under pressure to support Coun Khan by the manager of the Sixways hostel.
The claim, if true, would breach Electoral Commission guidelines which state that an individual must not exert "undue influence" to persuade or force someone to vote in a particular way.
It is alleged that nine requests for postal votes from residents at the hostel for unemployed people were among 200 forms delivered by Coun Khan to the council in April, minutes before the deadline for registration closed - a practice which, while not illegal, is frowned upon by the Electoral Commission.
Ian Middleton, aged 21, a resident at the hostel, said: "The manager brought out these voting forms. I could see my name on it and he said 'sign this'.
"He's the gaffer so I wasn't going to question him. I said 'I was going to vote BNP', but he said 'just sign it', so I did."
The claims were dismissed by the hostel manager, who said that although he had asked residents to vote he did not force them to do so.
Mr Middleton's role is being questioned by Liberal Democrats, since he does not appear on an official list of postal voters in Birmingham supplied to the party by the city council.
However, The Birmingham Post has established that Mr Middleton is on a postal vote register handed by the council to the Labour Party.
John Hemming, the Liberal Democrat MP for Yardley, said he feared the council was operating a "secret" postal vote list for the use of Labour.
Mr Hemming added: "We have what we understood to be the complete postal vote register, which does not include Mr Middleton. Yet when we checked with the Elections Office we were informed that they had indeed sent a postal vote to Mr Middleton at the hostel."
Coun Khan, who won the Aston election with a 352-vote majority, believes the hostel incident is part of a Labour "conspiracy" to put in jeopardy his position as prospective Lib Dem candidate for Ladywood at the next General Election.
Allegations about vote-rigging go back to 2004, when two Aston Labour councillors were thrown off the council after being involved in forging more than 2,000 postal votes.
Earlier this year, the Liberal Democrats were criticised when the Elections Commissioner dismissed claims of malpractice by Labour and found Coun Khan to have been involved in a "scurrilous" plot to accuse a political opponent of witness intimidation.
Asked to comment on the hostel allegations, Coun Khan denied any wrongdoing, adding: "This is basically an attempt to undermine me."
Sir Albert Bore, leader of the council Labour group, has written to the Electoral Commission and to council leader Mike Whitby demanding an inquiry into Coun Khan's campaign in Aston.
Sir Albert said: "There appears to be Lib Dem malpractice and if Coun Khan isn't involved they need to prove he isn't."
Labour also want the police to look into an unusually large number of proxy votes granted in Aston.
A total of 90 proxies were issued, enabling a person to vote on someone else's behalf, compared with a Birmingham average of 14 per ward.
* A Liberal Democrat inquiry into the behaviour of Coun Khan and former party election candidate Saeed Aehmed is yet to get under way.
Council Lib Dem group leader Paul Tilsley said the hearing, to be chaired by senior party member Brian Morrell, had been delayed because of the local elections but would get under way soon.