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State BJP defends Deputy CM on multiple voting charge

  • ‘Party has confirmed from Patton that he only voted once’
  • Says polling officials has given clean chit to DyCM

Kohima, April 24: The Nagaland State BJP today stood behind its Legislature Party (BLP) Leader and Deputy Chief Minister Y Patton on the issue of alleged multiple voting while also apologizing on his wearing a BJP stole (scarf) inside a polling station during the April 11 Lok Sabha poll.
Addressing a press conference here Wednesday afternoon, BJP President and Minister for Higher & Technical Education, Temjen Imna Along made efforts to cover a video showing Patton entering into the Polling Station-31 in Riphyim Old-III under 37-Tyui Assembly Constituency in Wokha district with multiple voters slip which has been viral in the social media.
He said the allegation that the BLP leader Patton had cast 8-9 votes is a ‘blatant lie’.
Without knowing the proper facts, propagandas should not be taken as an election asset to score points against each other, he said while reacting to State Congress demanding Deputy CM’s resignation.
“We have confirmed from our leader that he had only voted for himself and came out of the polling booth after doing so,” he claimed.
The authenticity of the video has to be verified because the Returning Officer and Observers here had given a clean chit to the BLP leader, he said, adding that “we are completely behind the BLP leader because there is no evidence that prove he casted 8-9 votes and we strongly condemn such insinuation.
BJP Nagaland condemns any decision being taken based on viral posts in social media, he said.
“We need a matured society, and not those running on social media posts,” he said while demanding that the authenticity of the video and intention of the person in spreading it should be scrutinized.
The BJP president even went to the extent of saying that the video is a blatant effort to malign the name of the Deputy CM and also the officials of the polling station.
On being asked about the video showing Patton carrying several voters slip and also making at least seven signature in the presiding officers record book, Along pretended of not having completely seen the video. He, however, said that since the polling officials had given clean chit to Patton, it is for them to prove whether our leader had casted so many votes.
Nonetheless, acknowledging that the Election Commission has ordered a re-poll in the said polling station, Along said “there is no need of re-polling there but ECI due to the viral video has called for it”.
In this, the BJP leader called upon the observers to check that the real voters exercise their franchise during the re-poll”.
He also claimed that BJP has a strong hold there and would get more than what was expected after the April 11 polling.
On that day he went to the Polling Station with a BJP scarf but it was not with an ulterior act, Along said.
“There was no BJP candidate as such but we had the PDA consensus candidate (BJP is an ally) and Patton being the BLP leader, he had worn it and if there is any such repercussion caused by it we on behalf of the party apologize for it but we are in no way against anyone or to demean the ECI directive or the Election Code of Conduct,” Along said.
On the stand of Nagaland BJP with regard to proposed implementation of Citizenship Amendment Bill and Uniform Civil Code throughout the country, if voted to power, Along reiterated that they do not accept the CAB in the present form.
Nonetheless, he said that the situation of every state is different and Nagas are already strengthened with provisions in the Constitution of India which protects the culture, religion and identity.
Moreover, the BJP leader expressed hope that any law before being put into implementation would be thoroughly discussed in public while the rules will protect the rights of the minority.
The BJP Nagaland on behalf of the minority communities will approach the national BJP leaders on the issue, Along added.
(Page News Service)