Assam: 181 Votes Cast at Poll Booth For 90, 5 Officials Suspended
District election officer of Dima Hasao has proposed a repoll.
Assam’s Dima Hasao district witnessed a massive irregularity according to poll officials on Monday, 5 April. In a polling booth with 90 voters in Dima Hasao, 181 votes were found to have been polled, reported PTI.
A day after the second phase of polling on 1 April, the district election officer and deputy commissioner of Dima Hasao suspended five poll officials of the booth and proposed a repoll, added the report.
Poll officials told PTI that the head of the village brought his own voting list, instead of accepting the official list. The people residing in the village reportedly followed the head’s list.
What Did the Chief Electoral Officer Say:
Chief Electoral Officer Nitin Khade said in a statement, “As per the valid electoral roll, there are only 90 electors in this polling station. However, a total 181 votes were cast at polling station No 107-A on 1 April 2021.”
There is no clarity on why the village head’s list was accepted by polling officials and the role of security personnel in the booth, if there were any present, added the report.
The Election Commission suspended Sector Officer Seikhosiem Lhangum, Presiding Officer Prahlad Ch Roy, 1st Polling Officer Parameswar Charangsa, 2nd Polling Officer Swaraj Kanti Das and 3rd Polling Officer Lalzamlo Thiek with immediate effect, due to “dereliction of duty”, reported PTI.
“The presiding and first polling officer in their statements have admitted that they had allowed the voters registered at the main polling station to cast their votes at the auxiliary polling station,” Khade said.
Congress spokesperson Rhituporna Konwar alleged that the EC is “not serious” about holding free and fair elections in the state.
He added, “If the EC was serious, it would have announced a re-poll at the booth by now as it is already four days since the polling took place. We demand immediate announcement of the re-polling at that particular centre.”
An official order for the re-election, however, has still not been issued. The booth is in the Haflong constituency, which witnessed 74 percent polling, as per the report.
Forty seats out of Assam's 126 constituencies will be voting in the third phase of polling on 6 April.
(With inputs from PTI)
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