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SC orders flouted during Tripura civic polls: CPI(M)

Government employees chosen for election duty for civic polls wait in a queue to cast postal ballot in Agartala on Friday.   | Photo Credit: PTI

Calling the Tripura civic polls a farce, CPI(M) Polit Bureau in a statement here accused the BJP State government of blatantly flouting all directions issued by the Supreme Court.

“The police and Central police forces were made to be mute spectators to the rigging of the election,” the party said. Municipal corporations of the State capital Agartala and 19 others went to polls on November 25.

The party said before the polling day, gangs of BJP men began visiting houses in Agartala and other towns, and threatening CPI(M) candidates, polling agents and local leaders, warning them not to go out on polling day. They were threatened with physical violence and told their families would be driven out of their houses, it alleged.

The party said, there was extensive booth capturing by BJP goons on polling day in Agartala, Dharmanagar, Khowai, Belonia and Melaghar, and voters were physically stopped in many places. In Agartala town, polling agents of the Left parties were “beaten up and driven out of many booths”. Most of the booths were captured at the start of the polling itself and people were prevented from voting, it said.

Earlier, Opposition candidates were prevented from filing nominations in seven municipalities, it alleged. As a result, after withdrawals, BJP candidates were elected unopposed.

“All these brazen attacks on the electoral system, democracy and the right to vote have taken place despite the Supreme Court passing orders to ensure adequate deployment of Central police forces to secure the electoral process,” CPI(M) said.

The Left Front in Tripura has demanded countermanding of polls to five municipal councils, including Agartala, and re-polling in a number of wards.

“Since the Supreme Court had intervened to try and ensure a free and fair poll, it should act now to safeguard democracy and the citizens’ right to vote in Tripura,” the party said.

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Printable version | Jan 21, 2022 5:54:17 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/other-states/sc-orders-flouted-during-tripura-civic-polls-cpim/article37714083.ece

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