The Election Commission on Monday ordered re-polling at a booth in Asaoti in Haryana’s Faridabad district on May 19, a day after a polling agent was arrested for allegedly trying to influence voters. The poll panel said a complaint of violation of voting secrecy was found to be true.
The Election Commission has directed Indian Administrative Service officer Ashok Kumar Garg to take over as Faridabad’s returning officer on Tuesday, and transferred the official currently occupying the post.
The commission said that a first information report has been lodged against Giriraj Singh, the polling agent. It is not yet clear which party he belongs to.
The poll panel has also suspended Presiding Officer Amit Atri for dereliction of duty, and initiated criminal action against him. The booth’s micro observer Sonal Gulati has been barred from election-related work for three years.
The violation of electoral rules came to light after a video, which surfaced online, showed a man, presumed to be Giriraj Singh, walking up to the polling station repeatedly while people were trying to vote. He seemed to have either pressed a button or pointed out a party symbol to at least three voters.
BJP leader and Union minister Krishan Pal Gurjar is the incumbent parliamentarian from Faridabad. He contested the polls against Congress’s Avtar Singh Bhadana and the Aam Aadmi Party’s Pandit Naveen Jaihind. Faridabad recorded a voter turnout of 64.88%. Six of the seven phases of the General Elections have concluded, with the last phase scheduled on May 19.