The CPIM in Tripura has written a letter to the Chief Electoral Officer (CEO) Puneet Agarwal demanding precautionary measures for ensuring free and fair by-elections for the 20-Boxanagar and 23 Dhanpur Assembly constituencies.
A three member of CPIM leaders led by CPIM MLA Jitendra Chaudhury, former minister Manik Dey and CPIM leader Haripada Das met the CEO Tripura and submitted the letter.
“From the experiences of earlier bye-elections held in 2022 in 4 Assembly seats, we like to draw the following matter to you for taking preventive measures beforehand for the sake of free and fair election. It was observed that, in the last bye-elections, particularly in the 8-Town Bordowali Assembly seat, the ruling BJP had come to a tacit understanding with the police through the then DCP VS Jadav, that the outsider workers deployed by BJP in the poll-bound areas were given free hand to terrorize the voters. The police were directed that the persons wearing yellow or white ribbons in hand or having "Tilak" on their forehead should not be touched. They were given whatever according to their whims. In this way the bye-election in 8-Town Bordowali Assembly seat was reduced to complete farce”, the letter reads.
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They further said though Sonamura town is not under poll area, this is the entry gate to both the Assembly seats where bye-elections are going to be held. Thus taking this advantage, the ruling BJP has already occupied all the hotels, guest houses and marriage halls in Sonamura town and adjoining areas to accommodate their outsider workers and they have been operating in both the Assembly seats since 8th August, the date of declaration of election.
“Similarly at Bar Narayan under Dhanpur AC, a very big camp has been running since the beginning where hundreds of outsiders are operating. The outsiders from each of the government guest houses and private hotels including those at Sonamura town may be flushed out by 2nd September next. The check posts must be maintained strictly. The Panchayet Training Institute at Bishramganj is reported to be packed with BJP workers from various parts of the state. This is also must be vacated early. To prevent any havoc in the poll day by these outsiders camped in different places, the Election Authority should take appropriate measures”, the letter informed.
They have demanded that as both the election-bound assembly seats are situated along long strip of international border with Bangladesh, the BSF may be asked to keep the strictest vigil along the border to prevent infiltration.
“The paramilitary forces to be posted at the entry point of each of the polling stations may be asked to confirm the identity of each voter by matching their EPIC or Identity Proof with that of the voter slip supplied by the Election authority. This is necessary to prevent intrusion of any fake voters into any polling station”, it added.
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