The Tamil Nadu Congress Committee on Thursday filed a complaint with the Chief Electoral Officer, Satyabrata Sahoo, alleging that 100 voting machines were brought from Coimbatore and Tiruvallur to replace EVMs in the Theni constituency, where Deputy Chief Minister O. Panneerselvam’s son P. Ravindranath Kumar contested.
In a letter to Mr. Sahoo, A. Gopanna, chairman, media department of the TNCC, alleged that some Election Commission officials were acting in connivance with the AIADMK to get Mr. Panneerselvam’s son elected by tampering with the EVMs stored in the strongrooms.
Mr. Gopanna said the Congress and the DMK had already raised a complaint with the CEO about the arrival of 50 EVMs to Theni constituency from Coimbatore for replacing the machines used on the polling day. “We were assured by the Returning Officer of Theni constituency and the CEO, Sahoo, that the 50 voting machines illegally brought from Coimbatore would be sent back and any attempt to tamper with the election process would be sternly dealth with,” he said.
“To our shock and surprise, we came to know that another 50 EVMs were brought to Theni constituency on May 15 by Election Commission officials with the sole aim of replacing the already used EVMs to favour AIADMK candidate who is none other than the Deputy Chief Minister’s son,” Mr. Gopanna alleged.
He charged that the R.O. of Theni constituency was acting as the AIADMK candidate’s election agent and abusing his official position to snatch victory from the Congress candidate.
He asked Mr. Sahoo to take necessary action to ensure that the 100 EVMs brought to Theni be removed and prevent any illegal attempts by the AIADMK candidate to vitiate the poll process.