EC describes Maoists as 'biggest' threat to polls
New Delhi, May 14 (ANI): The Election Commission has described Maoists as the biggest threat to the recently concluded elections.
"Our biggest challenge was security especially in Maoist belts because out of our 8,38,000 polling booths, 1,38,000 booths fall under Maoist belts," said S.Y. Qureshi, Election Commissioner.
On being asked to comment on the Election Commission's advice to Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) in the Varun Gandhi incident, Qureshi said that they only advised a political party making all things clear.
"This perception is wrong that we exceeded our power and advised someone. You must remember that we did not give advise to anyone walking on the road. We gave advise to a political party, who was the co-respondent in the case. They said that the statement made by Varun was wrong. We condemn it and we distance from him. We wrote in the order that we know our limitations. We also don't have the judicial right to disqualify any candidate, but we can always give advise to a responsible political party," added Qureshi.
When asked about Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Mayawati's allegation that he was working at the 'behest of the Congress', he strongly condemned the allegation.
Earlier, the Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) president had alleged that Qureshi was proximate to a 'senior leader of the Samajwadi Party' and 'is an old friend of the Congress' and accused him of acting on the basis of bogus complaints made by Opposition parties.
"People keep raising their fingers at the Election Commission. Political leaders tend to get emotional during campaigning, but such actions are inappropriate. I have no idea about who said what. But all these are inappropriate. We must condemn all this. I deny it and I condemn it," he added.
On the controversy revolving the recommendation made by N. Gopalaswami, former Chief Election Commissioner (CEC) seeking the removal of his colleague, Navin Chawla, Qureshi said that the former CEC never consulted him.
"(Gopalaswami never consulted me. The matter was between him and the President. The President's stance was that the CEC has the power to recommend. That's why, he didn't deem it necessary to consult us neither did he do it," added Qureshi. (ANI)