Election Commission ‘assures’ protesting Mizoram NGOs on CEO SB Shashank’s removal

A high-level team of the Election Commission of India (ECI), which was led by Deputy Election Commissioner Sudeep Jain, had purportedly given an assurance in this regard to the MNCC

Published: 09th November 2018 09:43 PM  |   Last Updated: 09th November 2018 09:43 PM   |  A+A-

The NGO Coordination Committee on Tuesday staged a massive sit-in demonstration outside the state Assembly demanding that the state’s chief electoral officer (CEO), SB Shashank. (Photo | EPS)

Express News Service

GUWAHATI: Mizoram’s chief electoral officer (CEO) SB Shashank, who is in the eye of a storm, will soon be removed, the agitating NGO Coordinating Committee (MNCC) said.

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A high-level team of the Election Commission of India (ECI), which was led by Deputy Election Commissioner Sudeep Jain, had purportedly given an assurance in this regard to the MNCC at a meeting held in Mizoram capital Aizawl on Friday.

MNCC leader Vanlalruata, who is the president of influential Young Mizo Association, told The New Indian Express that while the ECI team accepted the demand on Shashank’s ouster, it did not make any commitment on the reinstatement of the state’s principal secretary (home) Lalnunmawia Chuaungo.

“We raised the demand on the removal of Shashank as the CEO. The ECI team accepted it and said the replacement will be made in a couple of days. Our second demand was that the Bru (Reang) refugees should not be allowed to cast their votes in the relief camps in Tripura but within Mizoram. It was also accepted,” Vanlalruata said.

However, he said, the ECI delegation was non-committal on the demand for the reinstatement of Chuaungo. 

“We had submitted a petition for the reinstatement of Chuaungo. We requested the ECI to cancel the order of his transfer. They said he has been shifted (to the Union Ministry of Home Affairs) for a brief period,” Vanlalruata added. 

Shashank had left for Delhi on Wednesday after being summoned by the ECI. Earlier, the MNCC had set a deadline of November 5 to him to leave the state. It had threatened not to allow the holding of November 28 Mizoram elections.

The MNCC is enraged with Shashank for his complaint to the ECI against Chuaungo, who is a Mizo IAS officer of Gujarat-cadre. It was based on the CEO’s complaint that the ECI had relieved Chuaungo of all responsibilities and transferred him to the MHA.

In his complaint to the ECI, Shashank had accused Chuaungo of meddling in electoral rolls revision of the displaced Brus, some 32,000 of whom are lodged in relief camps in Tripura. He had also alleged that Chuaungo was interfering in the “process of security management of conduct of election”. 

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