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Monday, Sep 23, 2019

Kairana and Noorpur bypolls: EC takes serious note of VVPAT snags, orders repoll in 73 booths

The Election Commission (EC) has taken a serious view of faults in voter-verified paper audit trail (VVPAT) machines during bypolls for the Kairana Lok Sabha and Noorpur assembly seats.

lucknow Updated: May 30, 2018 07:21 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Hindustan Times, Lucknow
UP minister Suresh Rana (3rd in row) outside a polling booth in Kairana on Monday.
UP minister Suresh Rana (3rd in row) outside a polling booth in Kairana on Monday.(HT/Sunil Sharma)

The Election Commission (EC) on Tuesday ordered repoll in 73 polling stations of Kairana Lok Sabha constituency on Wednesday after some voter-verified paper audit trail (VVAP) machines developed snags during Monday’s by-election, an official said.

Electronic Voting Machines (EVMs) and VVPAT machines will be used in the repoll on all the booths.

Chief electoral officer (CEO) L Venkateshwar Lu said, voting will start at 7am and continue till 6pm.

The commission has allotted 500 extra VVPATs for the repoll and 20 engineers have been deployed to ensure there is no hiccup during polling.

Civil police and Central Paramilitary Forces (CPMF) personnel have been deployed at the polling stations to maintain law and order, he said.

The Election Commission has directed the returning officer to publicise the repoll through public announcement, beating of drums and other modes of propagation.

The EC has ordered the repoll in 23 polling stations in Nakur assembly segment of Kairana Lok Sabha seat, 45 polling stations in Gangoh , one polling station in Thanabhawan and four polling stations in the Shamli assembly segment of the Lok Sabha seat.

During the by-election on Monday, complaints about dysfunctional VVPATs started pouring in with the start of voting at 7am. Polling officers changed 384 VVPATs and three EVMs after the faults came to light.

The leaders of the Samajwadi Party (SP), the Rashtriya Lok Dal (RLD) and the Bhartiya Janta Party (BJP) submitted memorandums to the chief electoral officer to protest against faults in the EVMs and disruption in polling.

The commission sought a report from chief electoral officer (CEO) L Venkateshwar Lu, as well as the returning officers of the Kairana Lok Sabha and Noorpur assembly constituencies. After a scrutiny of the reports, the commission ordered repoll in 73 polling stations.

The EC has also deployed general observers, police observer, expenditure observers, sector magistrates, zonal magistrates, static magistrates and micro observers to monitor the repolling.

Deputy inspector general (law and order) Praveen Kumar said adequate police force will be deployed at the 73 polling stations to ensure peaceful and fair polling.

First Published: May 29, 2018 14:30 IST