Poll official suspended in Odisha
A poll official in Odisha's Kendrapada district has been suspended after TV footage showed alleged rigging during April 17 election, an official said Saturday.
District returning officer and Collector Nitin Bhanu Das Jawale said he has placed Ganeswar Jena, a college teacher, under suspension and initiated a probe against him.
Four other polling officials who were at the same station are also being probed, Jawale told IANS.
Also, a criminal case has been lodged against five polling agents at the same centre.
The administration swung into action after TV footage showing people resorting to vote rigging in the district's Aul area went viral on Facebook and Twitter.
It showed a man walking into the Electronic Voting Machine enclosure along with a woman voter and helping her press a specific button, while the polling officials looked on.
Simultaneous elections for 21 Lok Sabha and 147 assembly seats in the state were held in two phases April 10 and April 17. In Kendrapada district, polling was held April 17 in the second and final phase.
Accusing the ruling party of rigging and tampering the EVMs, the opposition parties, including the Bharatiya Janata Party and the Congress, had staged separate demonstrations and protests in the region.
(Posted on 26-04-2014)