RAIPUR: The opposition Congress in Chhattisgarh submitting a memorandum to the Election Commission sought an inquiry into an alleged large-scale irregularities leading to "inclusion of over 8 lakh bogus voters who were traced during the scrutiny of the electoral rolls".
A significant number of "probable duplicates" within each constituency, nearly 2 per cent of the size of the electorate, are found in the draft electoral roll published by the state chief electoral officer on July 31 this year, a private agency 'politics.in' hired by the opposition Congress underlined in its report and pointed-out the alleged irregularities and omissions.
Congress while highlighting the findings of the agency claimed "probable duplicates" on various parameters and argued a "non-compliance-" of 'Manual on Electoral Rolls, 2016' in Chhattisgarh. Compared to other states the Chhattisgarh registered the highest voter turnout at 77 per cent during 2013.
"In this election, the Congress party got only 97574 votes less than the ruling BJP. Had there been no fake voters the results would have been different", claimed the Congress president Bhupesh Baghel and the politics.in.
The opposition presuming massive irregularities averred that there were around ten seats that the BJP won through such bogus voting and formed the government in 2013.
The Congress gave a detail presentation before the Chief Election Commissioner (CEC) O P Rawat in Raipur and urged the Election Commission on Saturday to ensure the "fake and duplicate names" be weeded out from the electoral rolls.
Following the scrutiny of the electoral rolls of Chhattisgarh, it was emphasised that the state has seen a steady and uniform growth of 2-3 lakhs electors every year since 2003 assembly elections. "But surprisingly it was found that between 2013 and 2014, there was a growth of nearly 8 lakhs voters which is not consistent with the growth of the population in the same duration", it was pointed out.
However, the ruling BJP junked the allegations of Congress on electoral roll irregularities. "The Congress should trust the EC. It appears the Congress president has begun exploring the reason on the defeat of his party in the upcoming elections from now onwards", said the BJP spokesperson Shivratan Sharma.
The CEC on Saturday told that the final publication of the electoral rolls in Chhattisgarh will be on September 27. The revision of electoral rolls has been extended till September 7 allowing the people to submit their objections and suggestions about the voters' list.
The election to the 90-member House in Chhattisgarh is scheduled to be held later this year.