25 March 2021 9:23 AM GMT
Leader of Opposition in the Kerala Legislative Assembly, Ramesh Chennithala has moved the Kerala High Court alleging the existence of bogus voters and double entry of voters in the Electoral Rolls for the upcoming Kerala Assembly Elections. The petition states, "Unless those fake/multiple entry voters are restrained from participating in the poll and criminal action is launched...
Leader of Opposition in the Kerala Legislative Assembly, Ramesh Chennithala has moved the Kerala High Court alleging the existence of bogus voters and double entry of voters in the Electoral Rolls for the upcoming Kerala Assembly Elections.
The petition states,
"Unless those fake/multiple entry voters are restrained from participating in the poll and criminal action is launched against those who are responsible for fake/multiple entries, and punished in accordance with law, far reaching consequences will be caused to the electoral system."
The petition, filed through Advocates T Asaf Ali and Laliza TY, narrates that after the Final Electoral Rolls for the 2021 Assembly Elections were published on January 20, 2021, thousands of complaints were poured into the office of the petitioner alleging double votes, fake entries in the electoral rolls, illegal enrolment of votes in many times by single voter, multiple id cards etc.
It is added that after a preliminary enquiry conducted at ward level it was found that the complaints were very genuine, warranting urgent remedial measures.
Consequently, Ward Level Scrutiny Committees were constituted all over the state, the petition avers.
The Committees assisted by an expert committee with specialized knowledge of software, performed a comprehensive study, it is additionally averred.
Describing the results obtained as shocking, the petition states,
"On a cursory glance of the Compact Disc(CD), it could be seen that there are roughly 3,24,441 double votes and 1,09,601 bogus votes in the final electoral roll published on 20 th January 2021 spreading over 131 Assembly constituencies and hence there are total 4,34,042 lakhs double/fake votes in the final electoral rolls."
Despite the petitioner's representations on March 17, 18, and 19, these assertions were not investigated and rectified, the petition submits.
Contending that such large-scale electoral roll discrepancies could not have been effectedwithout organised action and involvement of government employees, the petitioner seeks criminal action against, "those who are responsible for, including those who aided and abetted in breach of official duty in connection with the preparation of electoral roll which facilitated fake/multiple entries in the electoral roll published for the election to the Kerala Legislative Assembly".
The petitioner opines that the manipulations were undertaken "with a calculated move to manipulate voters' list and thereby to make undue political advantage in the ensuing election to the Kerala Legislative Assembly", given that voters shares obtained by the two political fronts in the state differed by a narrow margin.
It is again stated,
"The petitioner is afraid of the deceptive silence of ruling party in the state even when the above said shocking disclosures regarding the electoral roll manipulations have been made public. It appears that the ruling coalition parties are not at all aggrieved by the above proved manipulations in the electoral rolls."
In this light, the petitioner prays that the court issue directions to the Election Commission of India, and the chief Electoral Officer to rectify the rolls, institute criminal action against persons discovered responsible for the alleged discrepancies, or allow the petitioner any other relief.