Probe team submits report to Election Commission


CHITWAN, May 31: The investigation team formed by the Election Commission to investigate into the ballot paper tearing incident in course of the vote counting under the first-phase local level election of Bharatpur Metropolitan City submitted its report to the Election Commission today.

EC spokesman Surya Prasad Sharma said the investigation team has registered its report at the Commission. The Commission on Monday constituted the investigation team under the convenorship of joint attorney Gita Prasad Timsina. Joint secretary at the Ministry of Home Affairs, Mahesh Acharya and DeputyInspector General of Police, Kedarman Singh Bhandari are the members.

The team arrived here and began its work on Monday itself. It completed its task on Tuesday.

According to spokesman Sharma, the Election Commission is in favor of settling the issue at the earliest. “The election commissioners will most probably hold a meeting on this topic today itself and give a way out,” he said.

Under-secretary Krishna Adhikari, who worked as the facilitator for the investigation team, said the report includes the statements made by the people with whom the team members met and it does not include the team’s views as it cannot do so.

The team met and interviewed the chiefs of the local political parties, the Chief Returning Officer, the Chief District Officer, the Chief of the District Police Office and the chief of the Armed Police Force team deployed at the vote counting center.

Representatives of political parties present at the vote counting center had torn the ballot papers while counting was underway for Bharatpur Metropolitan City Ward Number 19 at 11:45 pm on Sunday, forcing the Office of the Chief Returning Officer to suspend the vote counting.

Police has taken two cadres of the CPN (Maoist Centre) into custody for their alleged involvement in the ballot paper tearing incident.

The CPN (UML) party whose mayoral candidate Devi Gyawali is leading the overall vote count in Bharatpur Metropolitan City so far has demanded with the Election Commission to restart the vote counting whereas the CPN (Maoist Centre) and the Nepali Congress have called for re-polling to be held at Ward Number 19. The Nepali Congress and the Maoist Centre have fielded Renu Dahal as the mayoral candidate who is close behind Gyawali in vote tally. Gyawali is leading by 733 votes. RSS