A significant electoral malpractice incident was alleged in Sangtemla Ward No. 11 in Mokokchung, raising concerns over the integrity of the ongoing Mokokchung Municipal Council (MMC) elections.

According to a complaint lodged by the NDPP Mokokchung Region with the Additional Deputy Commissioner (ADC) and the Returning Officer (RO) overseeing the MMC elections, Rongsenshilu, a constable with the DEF Mokokchung, was allegedly caught red-handed while distributing money to voters on the night of June 23, 2024, in an attempt to buy votes for the Indian National Congress (INC) candidate, I Temsu Jamir.

“It may be stated that buying votes by cash or by kind is an electoral malpractice and a punishable offence,” stated Mangyangnungba, President of the NDPP Mokokchung Region, in the complaint letter. The letter further urged the authorities to grant the sanction to book the culprit immediately in the interest of a free and fair election.

Meanwhile, police sources have confirmed to this newspaper that the accused was found under the influence of alcohol.

“We didn’t recover any cash on him, but in our investigation, it was found that he was requesting his friend to support a particular party,” the police told MT. “Following this, immediate disciplinary action has been taken by SP Mokokchung,” the police source added.

According to NDPP Mokokchung Region, they learnt that the incident took place during door-to-door campaigning on June 23. Although they have no video or audio evidence, it was claimed that it was a matter that was caught “red handed”.

Meanwhile, the NDPP Sangtemla Ward Unit has officially withdrawn the FIR lodged at the Mokokchung Police Station reportedly basing on “mutual understanding”. When asked why it was withdrawn, the President of the NDPP Mokokchung Region said, “This action was not consulted with us. We are going to have a talk about it.” However, he expressed satisfaction over the report that the police have taken “necessary action.”

Meanwhile, Watimongba, President of the District Congress Committee, said perhaps it is too early to comment but added that the accused was under the influence of alcohol and it was likely that he was not a party member.

Mokokchung Congress refutes allegations leveled against its candidate

The District Congress Committee (DCC) Mokokchung and its sub-ordinate Aonglenden Assembly Constituency Congress Committee issued a clarification on Monday regarding allegations leveled against Indian National Congress (INC) candidate I Temsu Jamir for the forthcoming ULB election from Sangtemla, Ward 11.

In response to the complaint letter filed by the Nationalist Democratic Progressive Party (NDPP), Mokokchung Region to the Returning Officer, ULB Election, Mokokchung on Monday, alleging electoral malpractice by the Congress candidate, the DCC Mokokchung issued an 8-point clarification Monday evening.

The DCC Mokokchung said that the Police Constable, namely Rongsenshilu, alleged to have been caught red- handed of committing electoral malpractices is neither known to the Party nor the Candidate and as such, whatever act has been committed by the aforesaid person has been done on his own accord.

The DCC Mokokchung stated that the Police Constable, namely Rongsenshilu, alleged to have been caught red-handed committing electoral malpractices, is neither known to the Party nor the Candidate. Any actions attributed to him are entirely his own, it said. The DCC Mokokchung further maintained that neither the Party nor the Candidate has any affiliation with the Police Constable named in the complaint letter.

The DCC Mokokchung also said that the allegation leveled against the Candidate is truly unfounded and false in its entirety and added that the Party as well as the Candidate truly uphold and acknowledge the sanctity and integrity of the electoral institution of the nation.

It went on to say that the Party is aggrieved by the action of the NDPP Party for destroying the impeccable image and unblemished reputation of its Candidate just few days before the polling day for an act alleged to have been done by a person not known to the Party as well as the Candidate.

Further, the Congress Party urged the NDPP and all parties to refrain from making unfounded and unverified allegations against any Candidate in the future.

The Congress Party as well as the Candidate urges the electors not to be led astray by such false allegations, the DCC added.

Finally, the DCC Mokokchung said that the Party as well as the Candidate encourages all voters to stay firm and vigilant against such electoral malpractices and come out from the comfort of their homes on the day of the poll to vote for the leader of their choice for a better future.

The DCC Mokokchung’s clarification refuting the allegations brought against I Temsu Jamir ahead of the ULB elections was appended by Watimongba Aier, President, District Congress Committee, Mokokchung and Toshipokba Longkumer, Convenor, District Level ULB Election Committee, Mokokchung.

Mokokchung Times

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