Non-Congress parties left fuming as EC team pulls out of state visit


IMPHAL, Feb 22 (NNN): Non-Congress parties in Manipur are now “utterly confused” as a scheduled visit of a team of top officials of Election Commission of India (ECI) to Manipur got cancelled suddenly. The leaders of the political parties had expected the ECI team in connection with declaration of re-poll dates for several polling stations, which were reportedly rigged.

“The ECI cancelled the visit of its official team without any prior intimation and this has puzzled all the non-Congress parties of the state,” CPI leader Dr M Nara said while briefing the media after a joint meeting of NCP, CPI, CPI (M), JD (U), Manipur People’s Party (MPP), Manipur State Congress Party (MSCP), Naga People’s Front   (NPF) and All India Trinamool Congress (AITC) here, which was held to discuss various issues relating to widespread malpractices during the January 28 assembly polls.

“All the political parties were officially informed to attend a meeting to be held form 2 pm to 6.30 pm today with the ECI observers to discuss different issues on poll violations, but they (ECI) suddenly cancelled the trip without assigning any reason”, the CPI leader reiterated visibly irritated.

In an angry tone, he related that the office of the state chief election officer (CEO) had also declined to furnished details on the cancellation. State electoral fficials have refused to comment in this regard, claiming they have no knowledge about it, he said.

Today’s joint meeting, which was chaired by Dr Nara, discussed at length the whole issue of proxy voting during the Assembly elections and unanimously adopted three resolutions.

Firstly, it was decided to make a demand to the ECI to invalidate proxy votes which had been already verified; secondly, the ECI should take all political parties into confidence before making any decision on the issue; and lastly, all the returning officers should be directed to furnish postal ballot accounts, including lists of the postal  ballot papers to all the candidates and political parties on or before February 25.

The meeting also authorized Dr Nara to submit a memorandum along with the copies of the resolutions to the ECI.


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