State Election Commission denies allegations of favouritism

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Guwahati, Jan 11 (UNI) Assam State Election Commission today announced dates for re-polling amidst allegations against the Commission of favouring the ruling Congress.

Addressing a press conference here, State Election Commission Chairman C K Sharma said ''We have conducted re-polling in all places where we have received the least complaint. Media reports hinting that the Election Commission was being partial towards the Congress are totally baseless.'' Announcing the date for re-polling in Dhubri, Nalbari, Nagaon, Cachar, Kamrup and Dibrugarh districts, Mr Sharma said re-polling dates for Hailakandi district would be fixed later.

Large scale violence was reported during polling in Hailakandi in the third phase on January nine, which left over 50 people injured. There were reports of widespread rigging as about 200 polling booth personnel walked off from duty and burnt all the polling materials in front of the district election office.

Opposition parties Asom Gana Parishad (AGP) and Asom United Democratic Front (AUDF) yesterday demanded re-polling in several places held in the third phase.

AGP president Brindabon Goswami and AUDF working president HRA Choudhury had blamed the Congress for openly using the 'Government machinery and forcing the SEC to toe its line'. The AUDF had also submitted a memorandum to the Governor, demanding his immediate intervention and blamed the SEC for playing a 'biased role.' The AGP had alleged that the government had deliberately not sent any para-military force to Hailakandi district as the party was not in a favourable position in the district and wanted trouble.

UNI SG ADG RN1837

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