New Delhi: Voting in Tamil Nadu's Aravakurichi Assembly constituency will now be held on May 23, instead of Monday when the rest of the state goes to vote, the Election Commission has said amid charges that candidates and political parties had bribed voters.
- Voting deferred over charges that parties, candidates had bribed voters
- Electoral process has been 'seriously vitiated': Election Commission
- Voting in rest of Tamil Nadu on May 16, results on May 19 as scheduled
The electoral process has been "seriously vitiated" due to the unlawful activities of candidates and political parties, the Commission said.
The order added FIRs or police complaints have been lodged and Income Tax raids carried out at the residences and other premises of various political leaders show that unaccounted money and gift items have been distributed to voters to vitiate the electoral process.
"...the irresistible conclusion is that all the above seized monies and gift items were meant for distribution to electors as illegal inducement to them," the Election Commission said.
Yesterday political workers in Tamil Nadu's Panruti assembly constituency were purportedly caught on video bribing voters with as much as Rs 1,000 per vote.
Tamil Nadu, along with Kerala and Puducherry, is going for a single phase assembly election on May 16 with the results due on May 19.
The ruling AIADMK led by Chief Minister Jayalalithaa will seek to retain power in Tamil Nadu as the DMK, in alliance with the Congress tries to make a comeback led by 93-year-old M Karunanidhi.