The Election Commission of India (ECI) has ordered re-poll in six polling stations in the state due to ‘malfunctioning of EVMs/ VVPATs’ on the polling day on February 18, according to an official statement.
The polling booths which will undergo re-poll include Rajghat Uccha Buniyadi Vidalaya under Sonamura Assembly Constituency, Telkajla HS School under Dhanpur Assembly Constituency, Vivekananda Dwadash Shreni Vidyala under Teliamura Assembly Constituency, Luhuya High School under Sabroom Assembly Constituency, Mandaibari SB School under Ampinagar Assembly Constituency and Pearrachara Tea Estate High School under Kadamtala-Kurti Assembly Constituency.
The re-poll will be conducted on February 26 (Monday) from 7 am to 4 pm, according to the press statement issued by the ECI.
The ECI through its communique has asked the State Election Department to inform all stake holders including voters and go for massive awareness campaign.
The statement further said that the Commission has also noticed that the presiding officers inadvertently did not clear from the control unit the votes cast during mock poll in respect of seven polling stations- AMC Ward Office no-23 under Banamalipur Assembly Constituency, Paschim Rajnagar High School under Asharambari Assembly Constituency, Ashrambari Colony JB School under Santir Bazar Assembly Constituency, Krishnanagar SB School under Sabroom Assembly Constituency, Chailamong Para SB School under Kabrook Assembly Constituency, Biswakarma Para SB School under Raima Valley Assembly Constituency and Manughat DS Vidyalaya under Karamchara Assembly Constituency.
“However, the VVPAT slips of the mock poll where taken out, sealed, properly accounted and kept in separate special envelope. Hence, there is no need to go for re-poll as counting can be correctly done by counting of VVPAT slips in case of these seven polling booths”, it stated.
The ECI further clarified the votes would be counted through VVPAT slips of actual poll, where VVPAT slips of mock poll have not been kept in strong room.
VVPAT slips of mock poll have been kept in sealed envelope in strong room along with EVMs/VVPATs and other materials and that there is no need to count all the VVPAT slip to save time and errors.
However, the statement added the counting of VVPAT slips would be in addition to the mandatory count of VVPATs of one randomly selected polling station, as per the Commission’s existing instructions in this regard.
The statement further said that in four polling stations, the total numbers of electors as per Form 17A doesn’t tally with total number of votes recorded in Form 17A and thus resulting in difference of one vote.
The booths include Shalgara HS School under Kakraban-Shalgara Assembly Constituency, EE Water Resource Office Dakshin Mirjapur Division No-4 under Belonia Assembly Constituency, Durgarai Magbari JB School under Santir Bazar Assembly Constituency and Paschim Charakdai Panchayat Office under Jolaibari Assembly Constituency.
In these four cases, the Commission has directed that returning officers concerned will not declare the result without prior concurrence of the ECI, if winning margin is of one vote only.