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ECI inspects EVMs, declares as intact
Correspondent Ukhrul, Aug 31:
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Published on 31 Aug. 2010 11:57 PM IST
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Election Commission of India secretary (incharge of northeast) SK Rudolp on Tuesday inspected the EVMs kept in Police strong room in Ukhrul while declaring it as intact and in safe custody.
On Tuesday afternoon, a team of ECI and state election officials inspected 41 EVMs used during the 2007Assembly election in three Ukhrul constituencies in presence of candidates and party polling agents.
The inspection, however, was limited only to ascertain any external physical damage on the EVMs, leaving room for further speculation.
The official notification on Sunday last stated the EVMs would be re-open and check in presence of the candidates and polling agents. Earlier this year, Ukhrul deputy commissioner N Ashok Kumar had disclosed to the media that the EVMs were not used during the last parliamentary polls.
Sources also disclosed the Election Commission of India had barred the use of the machines for the 2009 parliamentary elections.
In 2007, the alleged manipulation of EVMs cropped up and complaints were lodged seeking information as to under what condition it was kept in the godown of the then DC Pankaj Kumar Pal. However, the issue assumed significance only after Delhi-based Nilesh Mishra filed an RTI.
During the inspection process, all the Congress candidates from three constituencies Phungyar, Chingai and Ukhrul were present while the sitting legislators were represented by their polling agents.
None of the Congress candidates were available for comment. In the 2007 Assembly polls, the three seats in Ukhrul district were won by Independent candidates backed by the United Naga Council.
In April last, the Manipur Naga Revolutionary Front (MNRF), a splintered group of NSCN (I-M), had released statement in local media charging the former Ukhrul deputy commissioner Pankaj Kumar Pal of having a hand in tampering the EVMs of 44 Ukhrul Constituency in 2007. Pankaj was suspended the same month for his alleged involvement in the killing of Kasom Khullen SDO, Dr. Kishen.

 
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