Hundreds of people took out a rally in Daporijo on Thursday demanding fresh polls at the 22-Soki/Doni polling station where five “dead people” voted and 17 others were allegedly not allowed to exercise their franchise.
The protest rally culminated at the deputy commissioner’s office in Daporijo.
One Nyabin Soki, a protestor, said that votes were cast in the name of five dead people while 17 genuine voters were deprived of voting on April 11 at Soki/Doni.
“We have substantial evidence with the allegations and have submitted them to the DEO/RO Danish Ashraf but there is action or scrutiny being initiated by the officer concerned,” he said.
He said the Election Commission should immediately probe the allegations and accordingly order fresh polls.
“We will carry on with our democratic protest if justice is not done,” he said.
Nyabin said that on scrutiny of Form 17(A), it was confirmed that 321 out of 323 voters, including 14 through postal ballot) cast their votes at the polling station.
“I was not allowed to cast my vote that day despite being a polling agent. So how can the total voting percentage at Soki/Doni be 99.38?” he asked.
“If 17 voters could not cast their vote, how could the total turnout be 321 at Soki/Doni. Besides, someone cast votes in the name of five voters who had died. This is ridiculous,” Nyabin said, adding that death certificates of the five were submitted with the complaint.
He further said that the DEO/RO’s inquiry report was “biased, unfortunate and unfair”, and the people had protested at the DEO’s office April 18 in this regard.
The 17 people deprived of casting their vote were also present on the day. A woman among them said they were not allowed to enter the polling booth that day.
“It was really unjust and unfair that we were not allowed to exercise our franchise despite being registered as voters,” she said, requesting the EC for fresh polls so that the legitimate voters can get an opportunity to choose their representative.
When asked about the allegations, deputy commissioner Ashraf said he was on leave and could not comment.
The Daporijo ADC did not comment either but said that he would apprise the DC of the matter after he resumes charge.