ECI non-committal over Mizoram NGO body’s demand to move counting date from Sunday

Election Commission of India
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Election Commission of India

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A five-member delegation of the NGO Coordination Committee (NGOCC) on Tuesday met the Election Commission in New Delhi and demanded that the poll panel move the date of counting of votes from Sunday, December 3, but the EC is yet to give its decision on the issue.

New Delhi/Aizawl: A five-member delegation of the NGO Coordination Committee (NGOCC) on Tuesday met the Election Commission in New Delhi and demanded that the poll panel move the date of counting of votes from Sunday, December 3, but the EC is yet to give its decision on the issue.

The NGOCC, an umbrella body of civil society and students' organisations, however, is very hopeful that the EC would change the date of counting of votes of the Mizoram Assembly elections as it is a Christian majority state and Sunday is a day of prayers for the community.

“We are awaiting the decision of the ECI on the change of the counting date. After considering the decision of the ECI, we would take our next course of action”, a leader of the delegation said.

NGO Coordination Committee Chairman Lalhmachhuana, who is also the president of the Young Mizo Association (YMA) led the delegation, which went to Delhi on Thursday to meet the poll panel as part of its last-ditch effort to convince the ECI to change the vote counting date.

The NGOCC delegation went to Delhi after the state Chief Electoral Officer (CEO) Madhup Vyas met with the ECI on this issue earlier. The ECI reportedly told the CEO that it will not reschedule the counting date since unlike polling, counting of votes does not involve common people who are free to do what they like on December 3.

Since the announcement of the election schedule for five states on October 9, all political parties, church bodies, NGOs, and civil society organisations in the Christian-majority state (87 per cent) have been requesting the ECI to reschedule the counting date.

Meanwhile, the ECI has already started the process of counting of votes on December 3. CEO Vyas said that a full-fledged trial for counting of votes would be held through the Encore portal on Thursday.

On December 3, over 4,000 counting personnel would be engaged in the 13 counting centers across the state to count the votes.

Around 40 counting halls would be set up in different districts. All the EVMs are securely placed in the strong rooms in all the 11 district headquarters, officials said.

Director General of Police (DGP) Anil Shukla said that adequate security measures have been taken for counting of votes. Huge contingent of Central Armed Police Forces and Mizoram armed police would be deployed to maintain law and order and smooth process of counting of votes.

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