Man Goes Live On Insta Inside Gujarat Polling Station, Repolling Ordered


The Election Commission (EC) has ordered fresh voting on May 11 at a polling station under the Dahod Lok Sabha seat in Gujarat from where a man live-streamed voting on May 7, the video of which went viral, an official said Thursday.

Four election officials, including a presiding officer, an assistant presiding officer and two polling officers as well a police constable were suspended in connection with the incident, the office of the Gujarat Chief Electoral Officer (CEO) said in a release.

The ECI declared null and void the voting which took place at Parthampur polling station at Santrampur taluka in Mahisagar district after taking into account a report submitted by the Returning Officer and Observer regarding irregularities, the CEO said.

As soon as the irregularities were reported, the CEO sought a report from the RO regarding the incident, it said.

The report was sent to the Election Commission, which under section 58, sub-section 2 of the Representation of the People Act, declared the polling held at the polling station on May 7 as null and void. A fresh polling has been scheduled at the polling station between 7 am and 6 pm on May 11, it said.

“The presiding officer, assistant presiding officer, two polling officers and one police constable have been suspended in connection with the incident,” it added.

Of the 26 Lok Sabha seats in Gujarat, polling was held in 25 constituencies on Tuesday in the third phase of the general elections. The BJP candidate in Surat has won unopposed.

The Congress had lodged a complaint with the EC about “booth capturing” and “bogus voting” by submitting a copy of the viral video, and demanded repolling.

The accused, Vijay Bhabhor, had stayed in the polling booth for five minutes, during which he went live on Instagram and also allegedly cast votes on behalf of two other electors, resorting to bogus voting, officials said.

Prabha Taviad is the Congress candidate in the constituency. She is pitted against incumbent MP Jasvantsinh Bhabhor.

The Congress claimed that the person who relayed the “booth capturing” video on Instagram is the son of a local BJP leader.

The video shows Vijay Bhabhor purportedly focusing the camera on EVM (electronic voting machine) and VVPAT (voter verifiable paper audit trail) machine and seeking five to ten minutes from a poll official even when he is asked to leave. Bhabhor purportedly also says that “only the BJP works here”. His accomplice was also seen in the video.

“The machine belongs to my father. Only one thing works – that is BJP,” says Bhabhor before pressing a button on the EVM, as per the video. “Only Vijay Bhabhor works here,” he purportedly says. He was later detained on the charge of bogus voting. 

(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)

NDTV News-India-news 



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