State

DY CM in the dock over alleged MCC violation

DIMAPUR, APR 12 (NPN) | Publish Date: 4/12/2019 11:58:45 AM IST

Nagaland deputy chief minister, Y. Patton has been put in the dock by opposition parties for allegedly violating the model code of conduct (MCC)during polling at polling station (PS) no. 31 under 37 Tuyi Assembly Constituency in Wokha district on April 11.

A day after NPCC lodged a complaint with Election Commission alleging that Patton had violated the MCC and demanding re-poll at PS 13, the Naga People’s Front (NPF) has also accused Patton of violating MCC and the ‘clean election’ campaign.

NPF demanded that the chief electoral officer (CEO) immediately take stringent action against Patton as per law of the land at the earliest.

NPF also urged the CEO to take immediate action against the government officials deputed to the Polling Station as presiding and polling officers in allowing such malpractices to take place. Referring to a video clip purportedly taken inside the polling station, NPF expressed shock at the sight of Patton wearing a BJP party scarf while entering No. 31 Riphyim Old polling station under 37 Tyui A/C on the polling day. NPF also alleged that Patton on the day, also cast votes eight times. Patton represents 37 Tyui assembly constituency.

NPF said it did not expect a leader who is the deputy chief minister and holding the crucial home portfolio, to commit such an offense but expected him to be advocating and guiding people on being law abiding citizens. 

Patton’s alleged violation of MCC has “demoralised the law-abiding citizens” claimed NPF.

 NPF pointed out that as per Election Commission rules, display of party election symbols in any form is prohibited within the 200-metre parameter of a polling booth on the polling day.

However, it said that “the No. 2 in the PDA government defied all norms and regulation by entering the polling booth by wearing the BJP scarf to cast his votes”.

The NPF also accused Patton of breaching the long demand for clean election- “one man one vote”- by casting votes eight times against the campaign being advocated not only by government agencies, but also by churches and civil society groups.

Patton denies violating model code of conduct

Forced on the back foot by these allegations, Deputy chief minister, Y Patton, has categorically denied having violated any electoral norm, rule and model code of conduct as alleged earlier by NPCC. 

In a rejoinder, Deputy Chief Minister’s Office(DCMO) through its media cell questioned the authenticity and intent of the video clip purportedly showing Patton entering the polling station. Stating that this required scrutiny, DCMO cautioned that the cause of action and legal recourse arising out of the same was reserved. 

DCMO also clarified that Patton never indulged in any multiple voting but only cast his legitimate vote and not as alleged by NPCC. 

It stated that Patton highly respected the constitutionally-established Election Commission and the electoral process and that he has assured of his cooperation with the competent authorities in any effort to find out the truth in this matter. 

Apart from the “unauthentic and ill-intent” video clip that went viral on social media, DCMO claimed that polling process at No. 31 Riphyim Old-III was completely peaceful with no complaint whatsoever from anyone or any corner and, as such, there was no reason for re-polling as demanded by NPCC. 

ACAUT asks CEO to take action against Patton: In another statement, ACAUT Nagaland has urged upon the Chief Electoral Officer (CEO) to take cognizance of the alleged blatant violation of election rules and take appropriate and immediate action against deputy chief minister Y Patton and those officials on election duty. 

ACAUT in a letter addressed to the CEO written by its chairman Tiatemsu Longchar, co-chairman Simon Kelio and secretary Hetoi Chishi, pointed out that it has been voicing out against the multiple enrolment and unethical practices during elections.

It maintained that the genesis of corruption lay in “unclean electioneering malpractices” that create a vicious cycle and entangling both the candidate and voters in corrupt practices. 

ACAUT also pointed out that the “very sanctity of democracy and election ethics” are destroyed when elections are hijacked by multiple proxy voting, impersonation, one man voting for the whole family, village councils declaring in favour of a candidate and using muscle power, booth capturing, etc. 

It also lamented that young voters in Nagaland were being given the impression that during elections, those in power, in this instant the home minister himself, can violate the law and get away with it. 

ACAUT said that , as the largest democracy in the world, India is looked upon by rest of the world as an example and inspiration for its vibrant universal adult franchise. It therefore, said as a deterrent, that the onus lay with the Election Commission to take appropriate action and corrective measures to prevent such blatant violation of election rules in future.

 

Launched on December 3,1990. Nagaland Post is the first and highest circulated newspaper of Nagaland state. Nagaland Post is also the first newspaper in Nagaland to be published in multi-colour.

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