Yekar plays down BJP’s allegation

ITANAGAR, Apr 29: The Janata Dal (United) candidate for the Daporijo assembly constituency in Upper Subansiri district, Dikto Yekar, on Monday sought to play down the allegations levelled against him by his rival BJP candidate.
The BJP candidate has been demanding re-poll at the Sikarijo, Yekar and Jeke polling stations, alleging that the JD (U) candidate and his workers resorted to violence, intimidation and booth capturing during the election held on 11 April, which Yekar refuted.
Terming the allegation “false, fabricated and misleading,” Yekar in a press statement said the BJP candidate’s demand for re-polling at those polling stations did not hold water.
He claimed that polling was conducted “smoothly and peacefully” at all three polling stations in the presence of the polling agents of the BJP.
The JD (U) candidate claimed that the returning officer visited the Sikarijo booth four times during the polling hours, “despite there being a peaceful atmosphere in and around the polling station.”
“At the Yekar polling station, the votes were equally divided in favour of both the political parties, and the poll was conducted smoothly and peacefully in the presence of the respective polling agents. Hence, the question of booth capturing or proxy voting does not arise,” Yekar said.
He said the alleged incident of violence, which took place at 5 am between the supporters of two rival groups on the outskirts of the polling station, did not have any impact on the polling process and the polling was conducted peacefully in the presence of all the polling agents.
Yekar said the allegation levelled against him was a “deliberate attempt to mislead the Election Commission of India and cover up the demand for re-poll at the Soki polling station.”
Yekar also sought justice for the 17 electors who were allegedly deprived of exercising their democratic rights during the polling at the Soki/Doni booth.
Sticking to his demand for re-poll at the Soki/Doni polling station, the JD (U) candidate claimed that no CCTV cameras had been installed at the polling station despite its having been identified as a critical polling station by the election commission.
He said that, taking undue advantage of the absence of CCTV cameras, the polling agents of the JD (U) were forcibly driven out of the polling booth.
“My election agent, too, was intimidated and prevented from entering the polling station,” Yekar claimed.
He also said that 99.38% voter turnout, from among the total 323 electors, could not have been possible without the participation of “five dead voters and 17 proxy voters who voted in place of the 17 who were deprived of their voting rights.”
He said that the Mosi/Chetia polling station registered a record 231 votes from among 233 electorates.
“Many proxy votes were cast. However, my polling agents were present at the booth, and that is why we have not lodged any complaint with the competent authority to conduct re-poll at the polling station,” he added.