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DMK partymen allege security lapse as 31 teachers allowed entry at Ramnad counting centre

Beyond the main gate of the college, there are four levels of entry points and Ponnuthurai reportedly spotted them while being frisked and allowed in, at the first entry point located at the portico.

Published: 16th April 2021 12:00 PM  |   Last Updated: 16th April 2021 12:05 PM   |  A+A-

ramnad counting centre

Teachers allowed entry on the premises of Anna University College of Engineering which is the counting centre for Ramanathapuram. (Photo | Express)

By Express News Service

RAMANATHAPURAM: In a serious breach of security arrangements at the district's poll counting centre located at Anna University College of Engineering, as many as 31 teachers of the college gained unauthorised entry, alleged DMK partymen sparking tension in the area. 

The DMK power agent M Ponnuthurai who was inside the counting centre on duty from 7 am to 2 pm on Thursday told The New Indian Express, "While I was looking at the CCTV visuals from the room allocated for party power agents, at 9.27 am, I noticed a group of men and women being allowed entry into the college block by the local police."

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Beyond the main gate of the college, there are four levels of entry points and Ponnuthurai reportedly spotted them while being frisked and allowed in, at the first entry point located at the portico. 

"All the 31 of them did not carry any authorisation letter but were however allowed entry, tantamounting to security lapse at the counting centre," he charged. 

When contacted, the DMK candidate from Ramanathapuram constituency Khadarbatcha Muthuramalingam said, "When a candidate is stopped at the main gate and allowed inside the college only after producing valid authorisation letters, it is a serious security breach in the presence of the police who stood guard at the entrance and permitted them inside, even allowing them to park their vehicles within the campus." 

All of them carried laptops. However, they neither had their ID cards issued by the college nor did they possess any valid authorisation letter from the Returning Officer or tahsildar, he told. "The incident questions the extent of three-tier security that is being provided at the counting centre," he remarked.

The men and women who entered claimed that they took permission from the college Dean to enter the premises, mentioned Muthuramalingam who said that a complaint over the incident has been lodged with the Election Commission of India. 

The District Election Officer Dinesh Ponraj who rushed to the spot along with the Superintendent of Police E Karthik, told The New Indian Express that the 31 men and women were in fact the teachers at the college. "They had gone inside the counting centre to make arrangements for online classes. Following objections from the Opposition parties, alternative arrangements would be made for the teachers," he mentioned. 



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