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Sunday, April 11, 2021

EC suspends poll official after EVMs found at TMC leader’s house

The Election Commission has said that the EVM and VVPAT machines will not be used for the polls.

By: Express Web Desk | Kolkata |
Updated: April 6, 2021 11:51:29 am
Voters queue up outside a polling booth in Diamond Harbour, West Bengal, on Tuesday. (Express Photo: Shashi Ghosh)

A polling official was suspended in West Bengal on Tuesday after he was found at a TMC leader’s house with four EVM and VVPAT machines.

The EVM and VVPAT were not being used for the elections on Tuesday, the Election Commission said. Tapan Sarkar, the deputed officer for Howrah’s Sector 17 in AC 177 Uluberia Uttar, was found to have taken the EVM and VVPAT machines to his politician-relative’s home.

A senior official said the incident, that happened in Tulsiberia village in the Uluberia Uttar assembly constituency, came to light when villagers spotted a vehicle with an Election Commission sticker outside the house of the TMC leader and started protesting.

Sarkar has claimed that he had reached the area very late and found the polling booth closed, following which he decided to spend the night at his relative’s residence as he could not find any “safe place” to stay.

A huge team of central forces had to be deployed in the area as the locals protested, alleging malpractices. Even the Block Development Officer was gheraoed when he had reached the spot to pacify the crowd.

BJP candidate Chiran Bera alleged that the incident was part of the TMC’s plan to rig the elections, a charge denied by the ruling party.

BJP state president Dilip Ghosh said, “This is an old habit of the TMC. They have been caught red-handed and it shows what they are up to.”

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