Gautam Das
CPI-M state general secretary addressing the media. Image - Northeast Now

CPI-M state secretary Gautam Das demanded deployment central paramilitary forces for the election to the Tripura East parliamentary constituency so that incidents of booth capturing and rigging are not repeated.

Addresing a press conference here on Thursday, Gautam Das also demanded repolling in more than 700 polling stations under Tripura West parliamentary constituency.

Das, while talking to reports at CPI-M’s state headquarters here also viewed that from now onwards central paramilitary forces should start their activities like flag march in the various areas so that people will get back the lost confidence and feel safe for voting.

Also read: ECI defers poll date for second Tripura seat apprehending violence

He said, “The state government, central government and the BJP party have tarnished the election system as they have acted like thieves but claim that they are ‘chawkidars’. Right from the PM, all lower posts have also declared themselves as ‘chowkidar’. This is a respectable post right from the British period. They have been gaining the confidence of the people but they have committed dacoity in broad daylight and thought that they can manage everything like they did in the three-tyre Panchayat and Municipal by-election. This time they have been caught red-handed and so the voting has been deferred in the Tripura East parliamentary constituency.”

Also read: CPI-M intensifies protest, demands re-poll in 464 polling booths in Tripura

Das added, “We reiterate our demand for full-proof security arrangement for the April 23 poll so that all the people irrespective of party affiliation can cast their votes without any fear and in a festive mood which is Tripura’s heritage.”

“Now it is the duty of the ECI and state election commissioner. Right from now, flag march should be done by central security forces so that voters get back the lost confidence. Additional force should be deployed and the sensitive polling centres should be given more security coverage,” he added.

The CPI-M state secretary alleged that they have lodged a complaint with the ECI on massive vote capturing and demanded repoll in more than 700 centres.

Das added, “We have lodged specific complains and till now, we have found vote capturing and rigging in 774 voting stations. However, the CEO said he has complaints against 836 centres. Anyway, they are scrutinizing all these and they have time till May 19.”

“At Shantirbazar, three companies of BSF were suppose to be deployed but the SDPO did not allow deployment of a single company of BSF. Similar incident happened in other areas where SPs and other top police officilas on the basis of order from their higher-ups did not deploy central paramilitary forces. In Tripura East seat also, there was similar attempt to influence the returning officer and the CM’s additional secretary had a secretary meeting and we have complained against all these to the ECI. Now proper voting should take place here so that people exercise their right without any fear,” added Das.

Pinaki Das

Pinaki Das is Northeast Now Correspondent in Agartala. He can be reached at:

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