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TPCC approaches HC seeking VVPAT or ballots in civic polls


Hyderabad: TPCC Chief Spokesperson Dr. Dasoju Sravan Kumar has approached the High Court seeking directions for the authorities to introduce the system of paper (manual) ballot papers in the ensuing election to Greater Warangal Municipal Corporation and Khammam Municipal Corporation scheduled to be held on 6th March.

Speaking to media persons here on Monday, Dr. Sravan Kumar alleged that the TRS Government had resorted to large scale irregularities in the recently concluded GHMC elections. Right from reservation of wards to announcement of results, rules were manipulated at all levels in such a manner that the entire election process was reduced to a farce. “The TRS Government is now trying to emulate the GHMC model in all elections. Therefore, we have decided to approach the court on two major issues – Viable Voter Verifiable Paper Audit Trail (VVPAT) in the EVMs or the introduction of ballot papers,” he said.

The TPCC leader said that the Congress party was not satisfied with the role played by the State Election Commission. “The SEC remained non-responsive to our pleas against the issues of notification and reservation of wards on the same day on January 12. It conveniently removed the NOTA option in GHMC polls without considering the fact that it was introduced to ensure high participation of voters in the election process. Consequently, more than 50% of voters in GHMC limits did not cast their vote. We made several representations to the SEC on various issues to prevent irregularities. But everything went in vain. Therefore, we have decided to approach the High Court seeking its intervention in the conduct of municipal elections in a free and fair manner,” he said.

Dr. Sravan Kumar said that the High Court has recently questioned the State Election Commission over non-implementation of constitutional provision of VVPAT in municipal elections. He said that the High Court has also asked SEC to clarify on non-implementation of NOTA option in GHMC elections. The High Court has posted the matter for next hearing on March 15. (INN)

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