ITANAGAR, 7 Dec: The Janata Dal (United)’s contesting candidate for the post of corporator from Ward No 2 in Itanagar, Yagam Jomoh has in a letter to the municipal returning officer (MRO) Talom Dupak objected to the candidature of her Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) opponent Yanya Niji on the ground of “double electoral roll.”
Addressing a press conference at the press club here on Monday, JD (U) supporter David Leyu Mara said that if the State Election Commission (SEC) fails to reject the candidature of Niji, they would take the case to court.
Mara said that Niji has electoral enrollment in Niji-I (gram panchayat constituency) of Sigin-II (zilla parishad constituency) in Kamle district “and also in Raga ST assembly constituency of Niji village.”
He said that, according to the Arunachal Pradesh Municipal Elections Act of 2009, “no person is entitled to register in the electoral roll for any municipality in more than one place.”
“Nobody is even entitled to be registered in the electoral roll for any municipality if his/her name has already been registered as a voter in the electoral roll for either municipality or panchayat,” he added.
Mara claimed that, in a similar case recently, an RO rejected the candidature of an ASM because of double enrollment in the panchayat as well as the Itanagar municipality.
“Why is then the MRO reluctant to reject the nomination of the BJP candidate despite all the substantial documents provided?” he asked.
“The double enrollment in panchayat and municipal elections is a ground for rejection of nomination. Is the nomination of Yanya Niji not being rejected only because she is from the BJP?” he questioned, adding that “this trend of political hypocrisy should end.”
Earlier, in response to the objection letter by Jomoh, the MRO stated that “there is no substantial ground for rejection of nomination on the ground of double enrollment which is in another electoral roll.”
“The candidate’s (Yanya Niji) name is already enrolled in the e-roll of Ward No 2 of the Itanagar municipality. Under such circumstances, the RO cannot go beyond the guidelines prescribed in the RO handbook, 2018,” Dupak stated.
He said that the complaint cannot be considered for rejection as it does not fall under the SEC guidelines provided in the handbook for “disqualification for membership.”