During the day-long 2,623 booth-level camps in Ludhiana on Sunday, more than 26,000 Form 6 were circulated for making new voters.
As per rough calculations of the election office, it was roughly 10 forms per booth in the district. This indicates that about 26,000 new voters came to enrol themselves.
Apart from this, complaints came from political parties regarding unavailability of the booth-level officers at few booths, the staff reaching late and even the unavailability of form 6 and 7.
However, Deputy Commissioner Rajat Aggarwal, when contacted, said, “Most of the complaints were found to be fake as our staff was very much at the spot. To keep a strict check, we got pictures clicked of the staff working at booth level.”
Interestingly, this was first-of-its-kind effort made by the district administration where soon after 10 pm, pictures of the staff present at booths were clicked and sent to the nodal officer through smart phones.
Though the DC stated that the system was working well in the entire city, volunteers of the Aam Aadami Party (AAP) cited problems at about 10 booths in the city. Dr Amardeep Singh Bains, a member of the AAP Campaign Committee, said, “There was no BLO present at Sherpur booth till 11 pm. We shot off an email to the chief election commissioner, Punjab. A prompt action was taken and the staff reached within 30 minutes.”
However, the DC said that the staff was very much present at the spot and they had proof of the same. Moreover,130 form 6 were also received from this booth which are for new voter cards.
Dr Bains added that apart from this, problems were reported from booths at Sunet, Kakowal, Giaspura and New High School in Sarabha Nagar where the staff reached late. The unavailability of form 6 and 7 was also highlighted.
Information revealed that a number of BLOs were not accepting Aadhaar cards as the proof for making new voter cards. The AAP Campaign Committee stated that according to their complaints, about 1,000 of new voters were not able to make voter cards.
Complaints came from the Congress rural and urban offices too. Malkiat Singh Dakha, president of the District Congress Committee (rural), stated that he too received complaints regarding the staff reaching late at many booths.