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IndiaLS polls: Oppn parties question EC's delay in making public final voting...

LS polls: Oppn parties question EC’s delay in making public final voting figures of phases 1, 2


New Delhi, Apr 30: The Congress, CPI(M) and the TMC on Tuesday questioned the Election Commission over delays in announcing the final voter turnout figures for the first two phases of the Lok Sabha polls, 11 days after the first round of polling on April 19.

Voting for the general elections is being held in seven phases, the remaining are on May 7, May 13, May 20, May 25 and June 1. Counting of votes will be taken up on June 4.

Congress general secretary Jairam Ramesh said it is essential for the Election Commission of (ECI) to be timely and transparent about all election-related data, and it should come out with the figures and make them public.

“For the first time, even 11 days after the first phase of the polls and four days after the second phase, the final voter turnout has not been published by the ECI. In the past, ECI used to publish the final voter turnout immediately after voting or within 24 hours. Only approximate polling figures are available on ECI's website. What accounts for this delay,” he asked in a post on X.

Ramesh said that additionally, the number of registered voters in each Lok Sabha constituency and the assembly constituencies included in that Lok Sabha constituency is also not available on the commission's website.

The website only shows the total number of voters in a state and the number of voters in each booth, he said.

“It is essential for the Election Commission of India to be as timely and transparent about all election-related data,” the Congress general secretary said.

Trinamool Congress (TMC) leader Derek O'Brien alleged, “(Prime Minister Narendra) Modi got the law changed in Parliament to get his own umpire and destroy the Election Commission.” Now, after two phases, the ECI is yet to disclose final polling data, he said.

“Why the delay? The first two phases didn't go well, did they! And EC, why no press conference after every phase,” he asked.

O'Brien was referring to the Chief Election Commissioner and Other Election Commissioners (Appointment, Conditions of Service and Term of Office) Act, 2023, that provides for appointment of the chief election commissioner (CEC) and election commissioners by a panel excluding the Chief Justice of India.

The law has provisions for a Selection Committee, chaired by the prime minister, leader of the opposition and a Union minister, to make recommendations to the President for appointment of CEC and election commissioners.

Communist Party of India (Marxist) general secretary Sitaram Yechury said, “This is very disturbing. Raises serious apprehensions on manipulation of results.”

“ECI has not disclosed the final poling figures of the first two phases. Only approximate polling percentages are put out. Total voters registered in a parliamentary constituency are not on ECI website. Percentages announced are, hence, meaningless and misleading,” he said .

“This opens many doors for manipulating the results by fabricating numbers. Till 2014, such data was readily available. ECI must put out this data immediately to restore voters' confidence,” Yechury said in a post on X.


The Northlines is an independent source on the Web for news, facts and figures relating to Jammu, Kashmir and Ladakh and its neighbourhood.

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