'Bengal poll officer remote-controlled by Trinamool'

Last Updated: Thu, Nov 01, 2012 15:50 hrs

Kolkata, Nov 1 (IANS) The opposition Communist Party of India-Marxist (CPI-M) in West Bengal Thursday accused the state's chief electoral officer of functioning at the behest of the Trinamool Congress-led government.

They alleged that the rights of citizens to empanel their names in the voters' list were being hindered.

"The CEO and his office are functioning at the directive of the Trinamool Congress and the state government. They are trying to disturb the rights of the citizens to include their names in the electoral rolls," CPI-M state secretariat member Rabin Deb told mediapersons here.

The Election Commission of India announced the special summary revision of electoral roll in August. The process began Oct 1, and was scheduled to run up to Oct 31.

"But, the CPI-M had urged the commission that in view of the festive season, the period should be extended. But our chief electoral officer didn't extend the deadline," Deb said.

"It was only after CPI-M politburo members Sitaram Yechuri and Surjyakanta Mishra submitted a memorandum to the Election Commission of India Oct 23, the ECI decided to extend the period upto Nov 8," he said.

The CPI-M leader also referred to an Election Commission advertisement brought out in the name of the state chief electoral officer Oct 31 in a leading vernacular daily.

"The advertisement came out Oct 31. But it said the special summary revision would continue on Oct 25 and 26. This is ridiculous," he said.

Deb also charged the state poll panel of preventing the people from enrolling their names on electoral rolls at the directive of the state government.

Deputy Election Commissioner Vinod Zutshi, who visited the state Wednesday, issued a notice that the extended period was not for special summary revision, but for intensive revision programme.

"In intensive revision programme, the ECI personnel go from door to door asking people whether they have enrolled their names or whether there will be any change of name," he said.

"How can the extension given for special summary revision be changed to intensive revision programme? This will only hamper the process of including names in electoral rolls," he added.

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