Sunday, May 22, 2022
image
Region

Re-poll in many booths of Tripura West seat likely

6091
By IANS Updated: Apr 27, 2019 11:13 pm
A A A

Agartala, April 27 (IANS): The Election Commission (EC) is likely to announce re-polling in a large number of polling stations in the Tripura West parliamentary constituency, where voting took place in the first phase of elections on April 11, an official said here on Saturday.

“After scrutiny of reports, documents, video and webcasting footages of the poll process in the Tripura West Lok Sabha seat, detailed reports were sent to the Election Commission on Friday. The commission after studying the reports may declare re-poll in a large number of polling booths,” a senior EC official told IANS.

The official predicted re-polling in as many as 140 polling stations out of the total 1,679. He said the analysis was done in two phases — April 12 to April 17 and April 24 to April 26.

“The Election Commission’s Special Observer for Tripura Vinod Zutshi, former Deputy Election Commissioner, supervised the second phase (April 24 to April 26) of study of official reports, documents, video and webcasting footages of the poll process in the Tripura West Lok Sabha constituency.”

The official said Tripura Chief Electoral Officer (CEO) Sriram Taranikanti on April 18 apprised the EC on the wrongdoing and submitted detailed reports and recommendations.

The CEO, four EC-appointed general observers, Returning Officer Sandeep Mahatme (also the District Magistrate and Collector of West Tripura district), all 19 Assistant Returning Officers and other officials were present in the second phase of studies.

Taranikanti said after scrutinising reports, it was found that 83.15 per cent of the 1,257,944 voters cast their voters in the deferred polling on April 23 in the Tripura East parliamentary constituency, reserved for the tribals. “There is no major complain in the polling to this seat,” he said.

Alleging large-scale rigging, booth capturing, intimidation and attacks on the voters and polling agents by the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) members and their goons, the Communist Party of India-Marxist (CPI-M) demanded re-polling in 846 of the 1,679 polling booths. The Congress wants fresh polling in the entire Tripura West constituency.

The CPI-M leaders held simultaneous demonstrations in Agartala and in New Delhi on April 16 to highlight their demands. The BJP leaders, however, dismissed the accusations calling them false and concocted.

Opposition demands fresh polls in Tripura West seat

The CPI-M and the Congress on Saturday threatened to launch an agitation and move the Supreme Court if the Election Commission did not order fresh voting in the Tripura West parliamentary seat, which went to the polls on April 11.

Alleging large-scale rigging, booth capturing, intimidation and attacks on voters and polling agents by the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) members and their goons, the Communist Party of India-Marxist (CPI-M) and the Congress have been demanding fresh polling in the constituency since April 11.

“Demanding fresh polling, the CPI-M led Left Front would hold demonstrations across the Tripura West constituency on April 29,” Tripura Left Front convener Bijan Dhar said after meeting Chief Electoral Officer (CEO) Sriram Taranikanti.

Dhar said they have told the CEO from the scrutiny of official reports, documents, video and webcasting footages of the poll process in the seat, it was established beyond doubt that voting was rigged by the ruling BJP members and their goons.

In a separate media briefing, the Tripura Pradesh Congress Vice-President Pijush Kanti Biswas said if the EC did not hold fresh votes his party would move the Supreme Court. “We have learnt the top BJP leaders in Delhi are influencing the EC to hold repoll in minimum polling stations to ensure their victory,” Biswas said.

Congress candidate to the seat Subal Bhowmik said the state party president Pradyot Bikram Manikya Debbarman was in Delhi, consulting senior lawyers for filing a case unless the EC ordered fresh voting in the entire constituency.

The BJP, however, dismissed accusations calling them false and concocted. “None of our party members, workers were involved in these so-called misconducts during the polling for the seat on April 11,” BJP spokesman Nabendu Bhattacharjee said and added the opposition parties were making excuses in the face of their certain defeat.

Meanwhile, an EC official said after the scrutiny of reports, documents, video and webcasting footages of the poll process in the seat, detailed reports had been sent to the poll panel on Friday. “The commission after studying these reports may declare re-poll soon in a large number of polling stations,” an EC official told IANS.

6091
By IANS Updated: Apr 27, 2019 11:13:43 pm