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Chief Electoral Officer: No further re-poll in Manipur

Imphal, February 25: After speculation for the last several days, it has become official now that no re-poll will take place in Manipur. Today, Manipur Chief Electoral Officer (CEO) PC Lawmkunga announced officially that no re-poll would be held in any of the assembly constituencies where polling booths are under dispute over alleged rampant rigging even though he said a decision on the matter of proxy votes would be taken by Election Commission of India (ECI) very soon.
This development has come when the CEO visited the Imphal West Deputy Commissioner (DC) office to inspect the arrangements being taken up there for counting of votes slated for March 6. Manipur went to poll on January 28.  “No further re-poll would be held in the State,” Lawmkunga told reporters on the sideline of the visit, ending the speculation of re-poll which has been in the media for days.
 He, however, said a detailed report on proxy voting and mismatched photos have already been submitted to ECI and that a response in this regard from the Central poll panel is being awaited. Asked about the controversy on misuse of postal ballot papers by the State Government employees, Lawmkunga said, “We have received complaints on illegal use of postal ballot papers by Government employees and that an inquiry is underway to find out the truth after which stringent action will be taken up against those officials who are found guilty.”
The CEO’s announcement came amidst speculation that re-poll might be conducted in a dozen of polling stations where illegal voting had been alleged.


10 non-Cong parties to move EC on proxy voting

Imphal, February 25 (NNN): Non-Congress political parties in Manipur are likely to block the process of counting of votes for the recent polls if the Election Commission of India (ECI) “fails to declare all the proxy votes invalid” and that they might come up with the demand of re-poll in an unspecific number of polling booths.
A delegate of 10 members from 10 non-Congress parties in the State that fielded their respective candidates in polls to the 10th Manipur assembly would be leaving for New Delhi tomorrow to hold talks with ECI chief, S.Y Quraishi after seeking an official appointment, according to CPI leader Dr M. Nara who told the media after a meeting attended by leaders of non-Congress parties  at Hotel Imphal here on Saturday.
The meeting chose a delegate of 10 leaders represented by presidents of the 10 parties and it also decided to send them to New Delhi by tomorrow itself and seek a meeting with the ECI chief during which the representative would demand the ECI chief for invalidation of proxy votes, mismatched-photos and those postal ballot papers issued to the State Government employees who were not assigned with the election duty on the polling day January 28.
“We will bar the counting process and demand for re-poll in the polling stations which have been reportedly committed rigging if the ECI fails to fulfill our demand for invalidation and exclusion of rigged-votes in counting of votes and that the same would be directly put before the ECI chief,” Nara informed.
The meeting also resolved to stage a sit-in on February 27 at Keishampat here to make known to the public that the recent Manipur polls were held without fairness and seek their support in denouncing it, the CPI leader added. The 10-party delegate will be joined by their Central parties’ leaders at the proposed meeting with the ECI chief.

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