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Khekiho seeks CEC intervention in Ladaigarh case
Published on 27 Apr. 2009 12:18 AM IST
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Seeking the intervention of the Chief Election Commissioner (CEC) over the illegal and forcible occupation of the Government Primary School in Ladaigarh village by the Assam police and halting the polling process of the polling station in that school on April 16, Rajya Sabha member from Nagaland, H. Khekiho Zhimomi has appealed for expedition of the issue with serious concern and restore the morale and democratic rights of the aggrieved villagers. Khekiho in an open letter to the CEC also urged for appropriate action upon the erring Assam police. He said that the Assam police in clear violation of the Indian Constitution and prima facia intention abruptly occupied the GPS/polling station and restrained the local inhabitants to exercise their franchise. He said the action of the Assam police was contrary to the government’s sincere desire to accommodate opportunity for every single citizen to exercise their franchise as disseminated through various mediums. Khekiho cited an instance where the ECI had allocated a poling station for one voter in Chhattisgarh, one polling station for two voters in Arunachal Pradesh etc and said it exhibited the concern of the government towards the voice of even a single voter. He however pointed out that depriving the voting right of the 908 electorate at Ladaigarh under 49 Tamlu A/C in Longleng district, Nagaland was gross violation of the fundamental right of the people. He also asserted it would be the manifestation of a different yardstick if the attention of the ECI was not caught by the issue in Ladaigarh. Describing the incident as the “pessimistic action” of the Assam police which was also “provocative” to her (Assam) neighbours, the MP said it was a threat to the peace and integration of the nation. He asserted that while Nagaland was harbouring all means to maintain cordial relationship within its neighbourhood, the state also cannot remain a mute spectator when the sanctity of the people was abused. In this context, Khekiho said the “erring custodian of law” (Assam police) deserved sanctions according to the law of the land for depriving the fundamental privilege of a bonafide citizen in exercising their franchise and for the act of contempt of the constitution of India. Khekiho said the Ladaigarh poling station was approved during the early part of 1971 and the villagers had been exercising their franchise since the parliamentary election that year and till state assembly election 2008 without any interference of any nature. He also said the Government Primary School in Ladaigarh village, constructed by the Nagaland government in 1980 was the official designated polling station. He said the school has also been receiving grants-in-aid under SSA initiated by the state government. Khekiho further pointed out that Ladaigarh enjoyed all benefits as deemed fit of a constituent unit under Tamlu sub-division and rural development block in Longleng district. He said all these facts indicated that the village was free from all encumbrances.

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