Breaking News
Nagaland Post Logo
You are here:  Skip Navigation LinksHome » Show story
Polling agents caught casting votes in AP
Published on 26 Apr. 2009 12:54 AM IST
Print  Text Size

Polling agents in two election booths in Andhra Pradesh’s Prakasam district were caught on camera while casting votes with the voters. A polling official was also seen advising a voter to cast his vote for the ruling Congress party, election officials said Saturday. The state’s Chief Electoral Officer I.V. Subba Rao said that the agents of different parties went to voting compartments with the voters and cast the votes. “Some polling officials may also be involved,” he said. Their acts were caught on closed circuit television cameras installed in the polling centres. They apparently had no knowledge of the cameras installed. The incidents occurred in two polling centres in Kondukur assembly constituency in Prakasam district during the second phase of elections to Lok Sabha and state assembly Thursday. Prakasam District Collector K. Devanand has directed the police to book criminal cases against all those involved and arrest them. There were six polling officials and one agent from every major party in each polling booth. The camera footage showed polling agents accompanying people to the voting compartments, where the voter alone should enter. The agents were pressing buttons on electronic voting machines in the compartments while the voters, including women, were mere spectators. In one polling booth, the official was seen showing his hand to a voter going towards compartment. He was apparently advising the voter to cast his vote for ‘hand’, the symbol of the Congress. The Election Commission has ordered re-polling in both the polling centres along with 61 other centres Sunday. Re-poll will be held Sunday in 63 polling booths in Andhra Pradesh, the Election Commission said Saturday. The commission ordered re-poll due to irregularities including damage to the electronic voting machines or technical problems during the second and final phase of polling to the Lok Sabha and state assembly Thursday. Re-polling will be held in 21 booths in Kadapa, the native district of Chief Minister Y.S. Rajasekhara Reddy where several incidents of violence and alleged electoral malpractices were reported. Re-voting has been ordered in 13 booths in Anantapur and eight in Kurnool. These three districts come under Rayalaseema region, notorious for political violence. In Prakasam district, where two people were killed and several injured in election-related violence, re-poll will be held in 11 booths. These include two booths where the polling officials and agents were seen making mockery of voting process. The remaining booths where re-poll was ordered are in West Godavari, Guntur, Chittoor, East Godavari, Krishna and Nellore districts. State Chief Electoral Officer I.V. Subba Rao said closed circuit television cameras would be installed and additional forces would be deployed in all the booths. “We are taking all precautions to ensure peaceful re-poll,” Subba Rao told reporters. In the second phase of polling, 75.5 percent of 26.6 million voters voted in 30,427 polling booths in 20 Lok Sabha and 150 assembly constituencies. The voter turnout in the first phase for 22 Lok Sabha and 154 assembly seats was 69.75 percent. The average voter turnout for both the phases was 72 percent. Following the incidents, the election authorities have ordered installation of cameras in all 63 booths. Prakasam was among 10 districts which went to polls in the second phase, covering 20 Lok Sabha and 150 assembly constituencies.

Comments:(0) Login or Register to post your Comment
(Available for registered users only)
More News