Imphal, October 07 2017: Even though the 5th General Panchayat election held today was by and large peaceful, isolated incidents of confiscating ballot boxes marred the election at three polling stations and these polling stations are likely to go for re-poll .
Reports received from the State election office recorded 90 per cent poll percentage in Kakching district, 84 per cent in Jiribam district and 95 per cent in Thoubal district .
The polling stations where ballot boxes were confiscated and thrown away are Thangjam Khunou of Khurai AC and Kyamgei Heibong Makhong and Kyamgei Maning Leikai of Keirao AC.
A group of people came to Thangjam Khunou LP School (polling station no 7/18/8) under Kairang Khomidok Zilla Parishad of Khurai AC at around 11 am.
They confiscated two ballot boxes and threw them into Kongba River .
They threw away another ballot box to a nearby paddy field while some ballot papers were set ablaze .
People of Thangjam Khunou and Haotal cast their votes at the particular polling station .
The group of people armed with clubs and canes demanded that voting for Zilla Parishad Member should stop even though voting for Pradhan and Ward Member might proceed .
Some womenfolk of Thangjam Khunou who tried to ease the situation were assaulted and shoved to a ditch, said one Laitonjam (O) Sunita who reportedly witnessed the incident .
Moreover, the group of people pelted stones to the polling station where many voters had queued up.
Incidentally, no one including the security personnel dared to intervene or control the situation, Sunita said .
Local Meira Paibi leader Takhellambam Ibemhal Leima said that some people of Khomidok have been creating such nuisance and violent disturbances in every Panchayat election .
She said that tight security arrangement must be made if the particular polling station should go to re-poll .
Similar tense situation erupted at Kyamgei Youth Pioneer Club, Kyamgei Heibong Makhong (polling station no 15/19) under Keirao Makting ZP and Kyamgei GP of Keirao AC when a group of people confiscated ballot boxes and threw them outside .
The miscreants confiscated and threw away ballot boxes on receiving a report that their rival Pradhan candidate was allegedly casting a number of proxy votes at another polling station, according to information culled from the spot .
Similar disturbance was also witnessed at Youth Popular Club, Kyamgei Maning Leikai (polling station no 15/18).Voting at the polling station was suspended midway as a group of people confiscated ballot boxes and threw them in a nearby pond .
Except for some stray incidents of conflict Sangaiyumpham, Leishangthem and Salungpham, the Panchayat election passed off peacefully in Thoubal district .
For 10 Zilla Parishad seats, 27 seats of Pradhans and 310 seats of Ward Members, 636 candidates contested the election in Thoubal district where 1,29,444 voters exercised their right to adult franchise .
A tense situation erupted at Rafiuddin School, Sangaiyumpham Cherapur on receiving reports that supporters of one ZP Member candidate were casting proxy votes enmasse.
The situation was brought under control with the arrival additional security forces .
Irong Thokchom polling station (3/16) of Leishangthem ZP was set afire by a crowd and voting was aborted .
Similar violent disturbances were also reported from some places within Lilong block.
Reports of opening gunfire were also received from Moijing .
Many polling personnel could not reach Thoubal district headquarters till late evening and re-poll is likely at some polling stations .
At around 5 pm, a scuffle broke out at Imphal East polling station number 11/4/4 Gouranagar LP School after the people standing in queue to cast their votes, were denied entry as the voting time was finished .
The enraged people destroyed the ballot box of the polling station and some police personnel also sustained injuries in the commotion .
According to report, a re-poll may be held for a polling station at Thanga Lawai of Bishnupur district as some errors were found in the numbering of the ballot papers .
Errors were also discovered in the ballot papers at a polling station of Hiyangthang Tarahei, Imphal West .
Minor scuffle also broke out at polling station 13 of Porompat.
Source: The Sangai Express