APCC demands re-polling at 2 polling stations

Staff Reporter

ITANAGAR, 29 Apr: The Arunachal Pradesh Congress Committee (APCC) on Monday demanded that the state chief electoral officer order re-polling at the Lengi and the Dingsar polling stations under Nacho assembly constituency.

Addressing mediapersons at the Arunachal Press Club, APCC vice president Toko Mina said that the Election Commission of India had on 21 April issued an order to conduct re-polling at both the polling stations, “but the re-poll process was not conducted in a transparent manner.”

Appealing to the authorities concerned to initiate action against the polling team(s) concerned for violating the election guidelines, Mina said, “Many government officers were found to be involved in illegal activities during the re-polling process.”

She claimed that the INC candidate’s polling agents were not provided with a movement sheet of the polling agent, “thereby undermining the ideals of the Election Conduct Rules of 1961.”

“However, the paramilitary personnel with arms were allowed inside the polling station(s), which created undue pressure on the electoral system,” Mina said, adding that, “observing the double voters, when polling agents of INC requested the presiding officer to provide a challenge fee and challenge form to raise the question over the identity of fake voters, the polling team (government officers) refused the same.”

“As per the Conduct of Election Rules, it is mandatory to provide form 17C to the polling agent, but the same form was not given to the polling agent,” Mina said, and further claimed that the polling team(s) did not discharge their duties sincerely and violated the Representation of the People Act, 1951 and the Conduct of Election Rules, 1961.

The APCC said that it would initiate “rigorous democratic movement if our demands are not addressed at the earliest.”

Stating that, “as per the guidelines, whenever the presiding officer enters the voting compartment, he shall permit the polling agent to accompany him,” Mina added that the presiding officer “never allowed the polling agent to accompany him, whereas he himself and CAPF personnel were moving freely near the voting compartment while the electoral officers were voting.”

“As per Section 25 of the Conduct of Election Rules, 1961, whenever a companion accompanies a voter, he/she must sign a declaration, but no such declaration forms were signed,” added Mina.