Dimapur, March 1: In order to ensure free and fair Lok Sabha election 2019, the Deputy Commissioner & District Election Officer Wokha, Dr. Manazir Jeelani Samoon, IAS has cautioned all village council chairmen under Wokha District against open declaration of support in favour of a particular candidate/political party by a village/ward/khel or community through public announcement and even through publication in electronic/print media, etc.
In an official circular, the DC Wokha, while reminding all VCCs of the order to Chief Electoral Office Nagaland on the issue, said Article 326 of the Constitution of India grants Universal Adult Suffrage to every eligible Indian citizen, and Rule 39 of the Conduct of Election 1961 directs to maintain secrecy of vote by electors.
Section 135A of Representation of the People Act 1951 on “Offence of Booth Capturing” provides – whoever commits an offence of booth capturing shall be punishable with imprisonment for a term which shall not be less than one year but which may extend to three years and with fine.
“And whereas, open declaration of support in favour of a particular candidate/political party by a village/ward/khel or community through public announcement and even through publication in electronic/print media etc violates the above provisions,” the DC said.
The DC reiterated that if any village or ward or community or group of people or media house is found violating or defying the said provisions in connection with any future elections, appropriate legal action shall be initiated against the violator (s) in the interest of free, fair, transparent election and administering social order. (Page News Service)