New Delhi, May 15: Noting that the electoral process in Aravakurichi Assembly constituency in Tamil Nadu has been "seriously vitiated" due to unlawful activities of candidates and political parties by "bribing" voters, the Election Commission tonight decided to defer the polls there.
Using its power under Article 324 of the Constitution, the Election Commission, in an order said that election in the constituency will now be held on May 23 instead of May 16.
Tamil Nadu, along with Kerala and Puducherry is going for a single phase assembly election on May 16. The EC said the counting of votes for the Aravakurichi constituency will take place on May 25.
The order signed by Chief Election Commissioner Naseem Zaidi and fellow Commissioners A K Joti and O P Rawat said FIRs have been lodged and Income Tax raids carried out at the residences and other premises of various political leaders show that unaccounted money and gift items have been distributed to voters to vitiate the electoral process. "...the irresistible conclusion is that all the above seized monies and gift items were meant for distribution to electors as illegal inducement to them.
"The Commission is satisfied that the current electoral process in Aravakurichi assembly constituency has been seriously vitiated on account of unlawful activities of the candidates and political parties and their workers in bribing the electors," the EC said in its order.