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Local body polls through ballot papers: Gujarat High Court issues notice to SEC

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The Gujarat High Court on Wednesday issued notice to the State Election Commission (SEC) in a PIL that sought that the body conduct local body polls or election through ballot papers.

The petitioner Imtiyaz Khan Pathan through advocate KR Koshti has filed a petition alleging that the state election commission in a reply to an RTI stated that VVPATs machines are not used in local bodies election and hence the VVPATs are not available.

The petitioner has prayed that in absence of VVPAT machines local body elections should be conducted through ballot paper.

The petitioner has also sought direction from the Gujarat High Court to get a status report about the written representation made by the petitioner before the state election commission on January 1, 2021.

The petitioner has cited the Supreme Court judgment of Subramaniam Swami versus the Election Commission of India.

Argument about VVPAT and local body polls

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Election Commission of India on September 19, 2017, directed all the state election commissions of the country to ensure that the VVPAT system is used with EVMs at all the polling stations in future Parliament and State Legislative Assembly elections.

The petition said that ECI and SEC both are constitutional authorities under the constitution of India.

The petitioner further said that he had submitted a written representation before the SEC on January 1, 2021, however, authorities have not responded to the same.

 

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