Election Commission of India (ECI) has suspended four polling officials deputed in south Assam’s Karimganj after they were found transporting an EVM in a BJP MAL’s vehicle.
The ECI has also ordered repolling in the booth of Ratabari LAC, and an FIR is likely to be filed in the case.’
Controversy irrupted after a video surfaced alleging that EVMs were being transported in the car of a BJP MLA.
The video surfaced barely a few hours after the second phase of the Assam assembly elections ended on Thursday.
The EVM was found in a car belonging to a Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) candidate Krishnendu Paul, who is contesting from Patharkandi LAC.
Though the polled EVMs were found intact, the poll panel has decided to do a repoll at the concerned polling booth in Ratabari (SC) “as an added precaution”.
The presiding officer has been issued a show-cause notice for violation of the transport protocol and a report on the incident sought from the EC’s special observer in Assam.
“This is a criminal act and we demand immediate disqualification of the candidate. This is clear that the BJP is losing in Assam that is why it is using illegal means to win the elections, which is unacceptable,” Congress leader Sushmita Dev said.
Earlier in the day, Congress general secretary Priyanka Gandhi Vadra asked all national political parties to have a “serious” re-evaluation on the use of electronic voting machines.
APCC chief Ripun Bora tweeted, “We expect the Election Commission to take immediate action and explain how this could happen. The Congress party will consider boycotting the election if this open loot and rigging of EVMs does not stop immediately.”
Congress MP Gaurav Gogoi wrote: “It is the same script in every election – Election Commission car broke down, EVM machines transferred to car belonging to BJP, later officials find out after public express their anger. Election Commission needs to save itself before public trust is eroded completely.”