Polling agent arrested over video of 'booth capture' in Haryana

Wednesday 15th May 2019 06:24 EDT

Faridabad: A polling agent in Faridabad near Delhi was arrested after he allegedly influenced voters in the sixth round of the national election. The action was taken against the official after a video on Twitter was brought to the notice of the Haryana election body. The video shows a man in blue t-shirt siting at his table inside a polling booth at Asaoti in Faridabad Lok Sabha seat's Prithla. Women voters can be seen standing in a queue inside the room. The man walks up to the voting compartment as a woman prepares to cast her vote, appears to press a button on the voting machine before returning to his seat. He repeats the act with two other women.

In the video, no other official present in the room tried to stop the man from going to the voting compartment. Many people tagged the Haryana election body's Twitter handle and sought action against the official.

Though the election body admitted that the man was trying to influence voters, it said the polling process was not affected. As questions are being raised as to how the the poll body is claiming that the voting process was not vitiated citing that the agent influenced only three voters, Election Commissioner Ashok Lavasa said, "The scrutiny of this polling station will be comprehensive."

The Election Commission of India said it sent the Faridabad election observer to the booth for a probe. Based on the election body's complaint, the man was arrested by the police and has been charged for alleged booth capturing.

The election commission said it will study the report of the Faridabad election observer before deciding further action. In Faridabad, Union Minister Krishan Pal Gurjar of the BJP is seeking re-election. Avtar Singh Bhadana is the Congress candidate and Pandit Naveen Jaihind is the Aam Aadmi Party candidate.

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