April 10

Villagers boycott elections

ITANAGAR, Apr 9: Voters of a polling station in Arunachal Pradesh damaged the lone suspension bridge linking the village posing problems of polling officials to reach the booth, IGP (Law and Order) Satyendra Garg informed.

Polling officials, however, managed to reach the booth under Pangin Assembly segment in East Siang district but the turn-out of voters was zero, Garg said.

The 140 voters of Sisen village under Pangin Assembly segment boycotted the Lok Sabha and Assembly polls held simultaneously in the state today to express their ire against the state government's alleged apathy in developing the remote village, official sources said.

Sitting Industry Minister Tapang Taloh who represents the seat is facing a triangular contest.

East Siang DEO also confirmed that Sisen villagers have boycotted the poll.

Meanwhile, the  administration  has lodged an FIR against the agitators U/S 186 and 187 IPC.

It may be mentioned here that the villagers had earlier threatened to boycott elections saying that they had been deprived of basic amenities, including road communication. They said that the villagers had been exercising their adult franchise since 1977 as responsible citizens with expectation of road connectivity, but their demands remained unfulfilled.  (With inputs from PTI)


EVMs destroyed in East Kameng

SEPPA, Apr 09: The EVMs of 27-Dapri of 9 - Chayangtajo, 19- Lapung of 8 - Bameng and 25 - Lumdung of 11- West Assembly constituency were destroyed as reported by concerned presiding officer.  At 25- Lumdung, 350 voters out of 649 voters already casted their vote and the EVM was destroyed in the process whereas the extra EVM indicated error and couldn’t work properly.

The situation of 1- Yakli under 9- Chayangtajo was tense and polling process couldn’t be conducted as no single voters turn up to cast their vote. It is worthwhile to mention that the re-polling was conducted at 1-Yakli during PR Election last year. The 1- Yakli is having 147 voters.

The polling percentage as per the reports received up to 3 PM from various constituencies  are -- 8- Bameng Assembly Constituency: the report received from 12 out of 40 polling stations was 63.41 per cent; 9 - Chayangtajo Assembly constituency: 20 out of 38 polling stations was 59.55 per cent; 10- Seppa (East) Assembly constituency: 15 out of 29 polling stations was 56.23 per cent and 12- Pakke Kessang Assembly constituency: 19 out of 26 polling stations was 53.70 per cent. So far, 30 polling team reached HQ, Seppa out of 167 polling teams. DIPRO


76 pc voters turnout in East Siang


RUKSIN, Apr  09:  About 76 per cent voter turn out was recorded in East Siang district till 6 pm today.

Barring some sporadic incidents of minor group clashes in some places, no poll related incident so far has been reported from any part of the district till filing of this report.

Since polling was going on in some polling booths till filing of this report,  the exact voter turn out in the district will be known tomorrow only.

In Pasighat West constituency, about 83 per cent electorates have cast their votes with Baromile polling station under Sille-Oyan block recording highest 93 percent voter turn out. Donyi-Polo Tea State (N/W) recorded lowest 59 percent voter turnout.

Polling in Depi-Moli polling station under Nari-Koyu assembly constituency was delayed by around an hour due to malfunctioning of the EVM. However, it was immediately replaced by another one. The polling station recorded a voter turn out of 85%. The EVM for Pangkang-Tunku polling booth under Pangin constituency too had to be replaced after it developed technical defect.

In Mebo constituency, polling was held for the East Parliamentary constituency seat as Congress nominee for the Mebo assembly seat was already declared uncontested.


Around 60 per cent voters turn out in Tirap and Longding

KHONSA, April 09: Braving the inclement weather, voters in Tirap and Longding districts turned out in large numbers to cast their valuable votes today. Barring an initial hiccup at Hasse-Russa under 58-Kanubari Assembly constituency polling was peaceful in both the districts. At Husse-Russa a 300 strong Assam police came from across Assam border and forced the polling officials to stop conducting polls in the school building there according to an eye witness. However, the poll was later conducted peacefully in the Anganwadi building. The 3 (three) Election Observers supervised the polling in the polling booths. Live webcast was shown from a few polling booths.

The voting percentage as per latest report is 60 per cent but the percentage is likely go up after receiving reports from all polling stations. Heavy security forces were deployed at hyper sensitive stations. There are 7 Assembly constituencies in Tirap and Longding district and 27 candidates are in the fray. The inclement weather with intermittent rain and heavy fog did not dampen the spirit of the voters to turn out in huge numbers.  DIPRO


Voting peaceful in Lohit

TEZU, Apr 9:  The simultaneous Lok Sabha and State Assembly election was held peacefully all over Lohit district at 125 Polling Stations today. There was no law and order problem during the entire polling session.

A total number of 11,526 voters including  6209 female  in 44th Tezu-Sunpura Assembly constituency (ST); 13,142 (Male-6690, female-6452) in 48th Lekang Assembly Constituency (ST) came out to vote for candidate and political party of their choice.

The percentage of voting in Tezu-Sunpura constituency and Lekang Assembly Constituency is recorded 66.75 and 87.2 percent respectively. Though the exact figure could not be obtained for the other two constituencies - 46th Chongkham and 47th Namsai constituencies, the total percentage has been recorded as 71 and 79.9 percent respectively.

Meanwhile, all the EVMs for 44th Assembly Constituency and Parliamentary election of 35 polling stations under Tezu-Sunpura has been received at Strong Room, Tezu. Proper security arrangements have been made for polled EVMs stored in Strong Rooms. All the proceedings from reception of EVMs till the counting day will be videographed.  DIPRO


Cash seizure increases

ITANAGAR, Apr 09: The Election Commission appointed teams operating in the state to check possible violation of election model code of conduct today seized Rs.3.73 lakh.

Cash apart, the teams today made seizure of large quantity of liquor,  one EPIC, 277 CGI sheets, one SBBL gun with cartridge and a motorcycle.

According to an official data prepared till today, the Election Commission appointed teams in Arunachal Pradesh so far have seized a total amount of Rs. 4,38,05,130 besides huge quantities of liquors, arms and ammonitions, party flags, manifestos, pamphlets, stickers, and other gift items etc.


News Impact

Arunachal records 71pc polling, re-polling in seven polling stations

ITANAGAR, Apr 09: The political fate of 144 Assembly and 11 Parliamentary candidates has been locked into electronic voting machines (EVMs) by the electorates of the state during the simultaneous Assembly and Lok Sabha elections which ended peacefully today.

Barring some sporadic incidents of violence, including damage of few EVMs in Kurung Kumey and some other districts, no major incident has been reported from any part of the state till filing of this report.

The state registered 71 percent voter turnout till 5 pm. The figure might increase as voting was still going on in some polling stations, Chief Electoral Officer CB  Kumar informed. The  state has a total of 7,57,493 electorates including 3,79,473 female voters.

Kumar informed that re-polling would be held in seven polling stations -- two in Kurung Kumey, three in East Kameng, one each in Upper Subansiri and East Siang for different reasons. The date for Re-polling would be fixed by the Election Commission of India (ECI) after getting detailed report from the respective Returning Officers, he said.

“It was a challenging task to conduct a simultaneous poll within a record one month time,”   the CEO  said  while  complementing to all including the police personnel, paramilitary forces and the media for the success.

“By and large the election was peaceful except some minor sporadic incidents reported from few polling stations. Three EVMs were replaced immediately from Polling stations of Naharlagun area after they developed technical defect,” he added.

The election was held for 49 Assembly and two Lok Sabha seats as 11 out of the 60 assembly seats have already been clinched uncontested by Congress.

In Itanagar, long queue of enthusiastic voters were seen waiting for their turn to exercise their franchise since 7 am. Heavy turn out of voters in different polling stations at Naharlagun and Nirujuli  was also reported.

Governor Lt Gen (Retd) Nirbhay Sharma along his wife Jyotsna Sharma cast their votes in polling booth set up at P-Sector School here at 10 am.  

“High turn out of voters, including youth to exercise their adult franchise to uphold the democratic tradition of the country is really encouraging, "  the Governor said after casting his vote.

In Itanagar Assembly constituency, a total of 54.55 percent electorates cast their votes in all the 64 Polling stations with 42-Hostalam polling station registering highest voter turn out of 96.84 per cent.

No untoward incident was reported from anywhere, Deputy Commissioner cum Returning Officer, 13- Itanagar Mige Kamki informed. He gave all, including the magistrates, police and polling officials, credit for the success and incident free polling.

Polling was also webcast live from more than 30 polling stations under Itanagar assembly constituency.

Till filing of this report Polling personnel along with EVMs and Polling materials from 13-Itanagar started reporting back to Siddhartha Hall, here along with their polling materials, official source informed.

Polling  in 14-Doimukh and 15-Sagalee Assembly constituencies also ended peacefully. Polling teams with EVMs and polling materials from some of the polling booths of Doimukh constituency have returned back to Siddhartha Hall.

Of the 2158 polling stations in the state, 583 polling booths were identified as sensitive and 529 as hypersensitive. Accordingly, a foolproof security apparatus were put in place to ensure incident-free polling.  Besides state police and other armed forces, 44 companies of central para-military forces have been deployed to ensure free, fair and peaceful conduct of the election, election office sources said.  



16 malfunctioning EVMs replaced during polling

ITANAGAR, Apr 09: As many as 16 Electronic Voting Machines were today replaced after they developed technical snags during voting for the two Lok Sabha seats and 49 out of 60 Assembly seats in Arunachal Pradesh, the EC said today.

State Chief Electoral officer Chandra Bhusan Kumar said polling process halted for a brief period after three EVMs developed technical snag in three booths at Naharlagun, while 13 EVMs were found defective during mock polling (6 am to 7 am) before formal voting begun.

"We are well prepared for such a situation and enough EVMs are kept in reserve to conduct the poll process smoothly," Kumar said.

Two separate EVMs have been used in each polling station for Lok Sabha and Assembly elections. Altogether, 4316 EVMs are being used for voting throughout the state. PTI



BJP alleges open campaigning by Govt staff for ruling party, demands inquiry

ITANAGAR, Apr 09: The State Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) today alleged open campaigning by some state government officers and officials in favour of the ruling Congress party by misusing their power and position and in total violation of model code of conduct.

Some government officers and officials have not only indulged in open campaigning but also threatened the contingency staff and labourers of various departments of dire consequences and termination, if they do not follow instruction, the party alleged in a release.

While the government officers were campaigning like a star campaigners for the ruling party, the vigilance teams/officials played the role of the mute spectators, the party alleged.

These illegalities could have been brought to the notice of the ECI if the election machineries in the state were sincere enough, the party said while alleging unholy nexus among the bigwigs of the ruling party, the state govt. officers and election machineries.

“This is very unfortunate, unethical and will set bad precedence.” Apart from this, unchecked and free flow of huge cash, liquor, distribution of gift items and agreements for work orders made the voters unrest this time too, the party alleged.

While demanding a thorough inquiry into the alleged indulgence in campaigning activity by state govt. employees, the party urged the ECI to ensure safety and security of the EVMs by strictly restricting entry of any unauthorized and suspected persons in to the strong room. The party, however, hailed the District Administration for managing law and order and restricting traffic movement which ensured almost peaceful polling this time.



EK voters defy rain, cast votes in large number

Staff Reporter

SEPPA, Apr 09: Defying the rain god’s temptation, the voters in East Kameng district came out to cast their votes in large number in the both Assembly and Parliamentary elections amid tight security today.  However, sporadic poll-related incidents in several polling stations in the district were also reported.

According to official sources, 73.52 percent of total 43893 voters including 23278 female cast their votes in 167 polling stations in the district.  Majority of polling teams are yet to report at district headquarters. Therefore, the poll per centage  will increase after  the report of all polling stations is made available, sources said.   

Official sources informed that  Electronic Voting Machine (EVM)  in some polling stations such as 27 – Dapri under   9th Chayang Tajo, Lapung,  Rikhung-Tallo  and Jawa Camp  under 8th Bameng and Lumdung under 11th West Seppa were reportedly damaged by some agitated voters. At Yakli polling station under Sawa circle of 9th Chayang Tajo, the poll was temporarily suspended due to poll related violence, however the section officer and presiding officer were unable to contact for details information,  said Tarin Dakpe  DC cum DEO East Kameng.  He further informed that other than damage of EVM, no law and order incident was reported till the evening. However, he added that  the district has more than 60 hyper-sensitive polling stations.

Superintendent of police Apang Tamut said that to prevent the poll-related incident, adequate security  arrangement was made for the safety passage of EVMs and  team of polling officials.  The SP further divulged that  around  878 security personnel were deployed including three companies of Shastra Seema Bal (SSB), one CRPF company and many other IRBn and APP personnel.  The four section of striking force were stationed different centres such as Bameng, Khenewa, Chayang Tajo and Seijosa for back up and quick reaction to the untoward incidents.

Earlier Link Officer to Returning Officer cum PD Seppa Kego Jillen informed that strategies were adopted to avoid the poll-related incidents by selecting non-native officials. “It would normalize the poll-related incident and clear the misconception” Jillen said.

The mood of voters in the two constituencies namely the 11th Seppa West and 12th Pakke-Kessang were apparently different from other three constituencies as  the voters of these two constituencies are only voting for parliamentary election after the declaration of Congress candidates Mama Natung and Kameng Dolo elected un-contested.



Over 500 monks at Tawang & West Kameng districts vote

ITANAGAR, Apr 09: Over 500 monks of 400-year-old Tawang Monastery bordering China and those in nearby West Kameng district in Arunachal Pradesh today cast their votes for two Lok Sabha and 49 of the 60 Assembly seats.

"The monks invariably take part in the electoral exercise as citizens of India," Tawang district electoral officer Abhisek Deb and his West Kameng counterpart A K Singh said.

Theg Tse Rimpoche, the brother of T G Rinpoche, head of Gaden Rabgye-ling Monastery in West Kameng district headquarters Bomdila contested as an independent in direct contest against Congress' Jambey Tashi from Lumla.

Tawang Monastery, also known as Galden Namgey Lhatse, founded in 1680-1681 by Merak Lama Lodre Gyasto in accordance with the wishes of the fifth Dalai Lama, is the biggest Buddhist monastery in the world outside Lhasa in Tibet.

Located at an elevation of about 10,000 ft it is famous for a 27 ft golden Buddha in the meditating posture. The monastery, home to about 450 Lamas, is a three-storey structure spread over 140 sqm, with 65 residential buildings and 10 other structures.

It has a library with a collection of 400-year-old Kangyur scriptures in addition to many other invaluable manuscripts. Guru Tulku who is the chief priest (abbot) of the monastery could not be contacted for his comment. PTI



Many first time voters cast votes in state capital

Itanagar, Apr 09: Arunachal Pradesh wore a festive look today with enthusiastic youth and women voters flocking polling booths since early morning to cast their votes for the simultaneous Lok Sabha and Assembly polls.

Braving inclement weather after overnight downpour, voters thronged polling booths since 6 AM, an hour before polling, to exercise their franchise in their best outfits.

Long queues of women and youth could be seen in most of the polling stations waiting patiently for their turn to cast their votes.

"We want to cast our vote as early as possible because we will have to attend to household chores for the rest of the day," said 45-year-old Godak Yami from Niti Vihar.

"We want to be a part of the democratic process and prove our importance in decision making," housewife Supriya Majumdar of Chimpu area said.

Prominent voters like Governor Lt Gen (Retd) Nirbhay Singh and his wife cast their votes from a polling booth near the Raj Bhawan.

Chief Minister Nabam Tuki also exercised his franchise from Sagalee constituency in Papum Pare district.

Massive campaign by the district administrations to create awareness among voters to exercise their franchise has been successful in the state with a large turnout of electorate in the morning hours despite inclement weather, Chief Electoral Officer Chandra Bhusan Kumar said.

Youths, including first time voters in the state comprising 12.5 per cent of the total electorate of 7,53,150, also flocked to the booths in hordes.

"I am very excited to cast my vote for the first time.

I am aware that my vote is valuable and will not let it go waste", Tai Natam of Pachin Colony said.

Eighteen-year-old Oie Jerang from Itanagar, said he does not understand the nuances of politics, nor is he interested in the ever-changing promises political parties make.

"I dream of a better life and will vote for a party that will help me in this endeavour," says Jerang.

"I am excited about voting for the first time. More women should come out and vote for a better Arunachal and better India. I will vote for that candidate whom I think, can do something for the state as well as for the country," said Yai Tapi, a student of Government Higher Secondary school Itanagar.

Elderly people, assisted by relatives, were also seen outside the booths with many making way for them to cast their vote early so that they did not have to wait in queues for their turn.

For Yakh Kamdak, a woman in her late seventies, no party which, comes to power matters. She wants development especially in infrastructure, education and health sectors.

"The new government should frame a clear-cut policy for improving the law and order scenario of the state," she said.

82-year old T Hamu from Poma, a village in the vicinity of the state capital, who has always cast his vote, said that he would continue to vote till he is alive.

"I will exercise my vote according to my conscience and hope that the new government in offing will work for people's development in the true sense", he said.

For most of the voters in the state, development, better roads connectivity, improvement in law and order and check in price rise are the major issues that need to be addressed by the new government. PTI



Polling passes off peacefully in Lower Subansiri, LDV, East Siang and Upper Siang

ZIRO, Apr 09: Polling in Lower Subansiri for 16-Yachuli (ST) Assembly and 17- Ziro Hapoli Assembly constituencies passed off peacefully without any incidence of violence. High voters turn out was recorded at the polling stations of 16-Yachuli assembly constituency which recorded 89.02 per cent while the voters turn out was 75.74  per cent in Ziro-Hapoli Assembly constituency.

Live webcasting of polling process in four polling stations of the district was done. This includes- Hapoli Secondary school, Lal Bahadur Middle school, Gandhi middle school and Hill top middle school .

ROING: The Election for Lok Sabha and  State Assembly passed off peacefully and smoothly without any hiccup in the district except for defects in two control units (EVM) at a nearby Polling Station at Jia, under 42-Dambuk AC which was replaced immediately with reserved EVM before the polling began early this morning. There was no report of any untoward incident through out the district.

Despite the heavy rainfall intermittently, voters came out to vote in large numbers to the polling stations. Throughout the district, a total of 18,914 voters (out of 23,390 voters) with 81.5 per cent turn out were recorded in the district when report came in last (which may vary after the final report are received).  The polling teams started reaching the receiving centre since 6 PM in the evening and all are expected to reach  by tomorrow evening.

It was also informed that a total of 771 Postal Ballot Papers were issued against 2-Arunachal East Parliamentary constituency, 260 PB Papers issued against 42-Dambuk AC and 511 PB Paper issued against 43-Roing AC in the district. Out of it, 589 PB received against 2-Arunachal East Parliamentary Constituency, 172 PB against 42-Dambuk AC and 414 PB received against 43-Roing AC till date. Central Observer, U N Mallick, Expenditure Observer, R S Mitra along with DEO, Shiv Kumar over see the election.

PASIGHAT: All the polling stations witnessed brisk polling with voters forming serpentine queues to cast their votes barring rainfall and unbearable temperature. A per information received at 6 pm, an estimated 75.4 per cent voters  of the total 61, 227 exercised their franchise on Wednesday in the district. (However, the voter turnout would go up after the final reports as some voters are still casting their votes while  the report  is  being filed). Female voters out numbered their male counterparts and enthusiastically exercised their adult franchise.

Both the Parliamentary and Assembly polls went off peacefully in the district and no untoward incident has been reported except in Sisen village, falls under 35-Pangin-Boleng Assembly Constituency, there was no poll today. According to DEO Srivastava an FIR has been lodged against the agitators U/S 186 and 187 in Boleng police station and the matter has been intimated to the Nirvachan Bhawan, Itanagar.

Meanwhile, polling teams of nearby booths with man and materials have started reaching the receiving centre at DC’s office where the EVMs will be kept in strong room under tight security and under watchful eyes of Election Observers and DEO. Polling teams from far flung places are expected to reach by late-night or tomorrow.

YINGKIONG:  The simultaneous elections for state assembly and Parliamentary seats in Upper Siang district ended peacefully. There was no any untoward incident from any corners of the district till filing of this report. The district has two Assembly constituencies -- 34 -Tuting-Yingkiong and 40-Mariyang-Geku with total 21,453 voters.

As per the report made available 74.8 per cent voters cast their votes  till 3 pm. Detail report of total votes polled with percentage of every polling station including interior areas  in the district is expected to be available next day.  DIPROs



---- Editorial ----


Steps to protect oppressed South Asia women

United Nations labour agency and the United Kingdom Department for International Development  launched a new project on July 15 that seeks to prevent 100,000 girls and women across South Asia from falling victims to labour trafficking.

The project aims to provide South Asian women migrating to the Middle East in search for jobs with skills, pre-departure training and other support to help them avoid being trafficked and to secure a legal contract and decent wage. It will also combat child labour by helping thousands of girls under 16 years old to stay in school so they are not compelled to migrate for work.

Every year, millions of people from poor communities migrate to find employment so they can send money home to support their families. They get jobs such as live-in domestic workers cooking, cleaning and looking after families or in garment factories. Many end-up being deceived and trafficked into jobs with extremely low wages or no pay at all.

According to ILO, around 21 million people are trafficked and in forced labour worldwide. The majority are from Asia with women and girls being the most vulnerable to this practice. Their movement is restricted, their living and working conditions are very poor, and they often suffer physical and sexual abuse.

The project will also focus on helping migrant women avoid paying extortionate, illegal recruitment fees by cracking down on unscrupulous recruitment practices and encouraging recruitment agencies to sign-up to ethical principles and practices.

Copyright © 2008, The Arunachal Times Publications Pvt. Ltd., Siang House, Sector - E, Itanagar, Arunachal Pradesh - 791111, India

All rights reserved.