Hyderabad: Jennapalli Narsimhareddy (EPIC No. AP 322220351542) cast his vote at the Zilla Parishad High School, Chinnakistapur, polling station in Gajwel Assembly constituency on December 7. So says the State Election Commission.
In reality, the man has been dead for about three-and-a-half years. The irony is that VVPAT slips were issued in the names of the dead, but were missing for those still alive!
Several instances of misconduct were reported during polling on December 7 and have been kept under wraps, but they are gradually sliding out following the results.
The family of Narsimhareddy told this newspaper that he had expired in March 2016. The District Election Commission was asked on three occasions to delete his name from the voter’s list, yet, 32 months after his death, a voter slip was issued in his name.
In another instance of misconduct, a polling booth officer was caught with voter IDs of 200 voters. Video evidence that is in the possession of this newspaper shows a booth level officer, identified as K. Ramesh, appointed by the EC, purportedly being caught with more than 200 voter IDs.
In Khammam Assembly constituency, around 200 students of Mamata Medical College owned by TRS candidate Puvvada Ajay Kumar reached the polling booth at 8 am and were caught voting in the names of those who are dead, or have shifted or were absent.
TD Khammam candidate Nama Nageshwar Rao was caught on video questioning the block development officer for catching a student possessing a voter’s slip which was not in her name. The students alleged that they were studying at the medical college and were forced to support its owner.
In Sanathnagar, Hyderabad, an elderly voter was accompanied by a block development officer. A video purports to show that when she when to press the ‘Cycle’ symbol of the Telugu Desam, the officer caught her finger and made her press the ‘Car’ symbol button of the TRS.
In the video, the officer is heard saying, “Not here (the cycle symbol), here (the car symbol).”
Ahead of the polls, 30 civil society organisations came under the banner of Telangana Election Watch 2018, and worked with the Election Commission as election watch officers.
Their job was to keep a watch on violations, and the conduct of the election. In each district, members of this non-government organisation worked as election watchers and their report showed that the situation was unsatisfactory.
“In several districts, there was a defective voter’s list. Even after complaints were reported, no serious attempt was made to correct the list. The ground staff engaged in the work was not competent and sincere to do the job. Money, liquor and other gifts played a big role in elections,” the report said.
“The efforts made by the official machinery to control the flow of money was not enough. It is reported that about Rs 140 crore under transit is seized but it is a tip of the iceberg.” The election watchers will submit the report to the EC....