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Shakti Dal to man booths

Bogus voters in Gujarat beware! This is the warning that `Shakti Dal' formed by Shankersinh Vaghela is sending to all those who indulge in bogus voting.
PTI | By Press Trust of India, Ahmedabad
UPDATED ON APR 18, 2004 04:18 PM IST

Bogus voters in Gujarat beware! this is the warning that `Shakti Dal' -- the controversial baton wielding army formed by sitting MP from Kapadvanj Shankersinh Vaghela -- is sending to all those who indulge in bogus voting with just four days remaining for the state to go to polls on April 20.

"Close to two lakh Shakti Dal members would be part of `booth management' across the state from April 18 till 20 and ensure that booth capturing, forcing electorates to cast votes does not occur during voting time," founder of the outfit Vaghela told PTI here today.

The `Dal' members would not be in their uniform and sans baton as chances of rival and their main opposition BJP party `impersonating' them is there and that their presence should not be intimidating to the district administration officials, Vaghela said.

There are 80,000 members at present and in the coming days thousands more will be recruited from Surat and Rajkot districts and `booth management' training will be imparted to all, he said.

The `Shakti Dal' will ensure that no malpractice takes place in any of the crucial and the over 1,000 sensitive polling booths across the state, he added.

It would mainly focus on Vadodara, Chota Udepur, south Gujarat, Kapadvanj, Patan, Banaskantha, Mehsana and Surendranagar Lok Sabha constituencies, he said.

`Shakti Dal' is strongly opposed by Congress party workers. Vaghela had also met Congress president Sonia Gandhi, who urged him to convert the Dal into an NGO and work for the benefit of the party.

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