Chief Electoral Officer (CEO) FR Kharkongor, on March 1, directed the Ri Bhoi district election officer to immediately conduct an inquiry into alleged violation of secrecy of voting in a polling station under Mawhati constituency and to submit the action taken report before March 3.
This came after a viral image was circulated in the social media, with a photograph allegedly depicting a voter pressing the ballot button, in favour of a particular candidate in the ballot unit, which tantamount to violation of secrecy of voting.
The incident also took place despite strict instructions issued to ensure that the voters at polling stations should not be allowed to carry mobile phones inside the voting compartment.
“In connection with the apparent violation above, which appears to be an aberration, and in you capacity as District Election Officer, Ri Bhoi District, where the above aberration appeared to have been committed, you are hereby directed to cause immediate inquiry, with a view to ascertain the facts of the above alleged violation, which reportedly occurred in 35-Shiliang Umdoh polling station under Mawhati Assembly constituency,” Kharkongor said in his letter to the Ri Bhoi DEO.
The CEO also directed the DEO to take strict action against the erring polling officials of the concerned polling station post inquiry.
“Penal action should also be initiated against the alleged voter who violated his secrecy of vote after ascertaining the necessary facts of the above case,” he said while further directing that the action taken report should be furnished without fail not later than March 3.