AAP questions EC over delay in voter tally

New Delhi (IANS) The Aam Aadmi Party on Sunday questioned the Election Commission over not releasing the final voting percentage even 24 hours after voting ended.

AAP leaders, including national convener Arvind Kejriwal, questioned the delay.

A day after polling in Delhi ended, the Election Commission responded that it was still compiling the voter turnout data at polling stations from scratch. "This is being compiled at polling station level from scratch and it will take time," an official from Election Commission said.

"Moreover this huge exercise is in continuation of sealing of strongrooms which goes on till 3 a.m. The conclusive data is reported from all 13,000 polling stations and as I said starts from scratch and takes time," the EC official said.

The voting ended at 6 p.m. on Saturday, however, due to long queues at some booths, more time was given so that those in line can exercise their rights.

Responding to a tweet from a journalist that quoted officials as saying "final polling percentage will be made public by today (Sunday) evening", Kejriwal called it "shocking".

"Absolutely shocking what the EC is doing. Why are they not releasing poll turnout figures, several hours after polling?" he said.

Meanwhile, AAP Cabinet Minister and Shakur Basti candidate Satyendar Jain said after compilation of Form 17C for 143 booths in the constituency, a total of 98,012 out of 1,44,777 votes were polled.

"That works out to be 67.7 per cent votes. Whereas the EC website is showing 49.19 per cent polling only. Why after 22 hours of official polling data is not released by EC," Jain tweeted.

Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia also questioned the delay, alleging that BJP leaders were providing voting statistics.

"The Election Commission has not been able to tell what percentage of voting took place even after 24 hours since polling ended... What is happening? Will you collect the final numbers from the BJP office?"

Aam Aadmi Party leader Sanjay Singh said it was the first time in history that the EC is taking so long to announce the turnout.

"Even in Lok Sabha elections, the turnout is announced the same day. I remember the time when polling used to happen on ballots. The next day, newspapers used to have the figures about the turnout," Singh said.

He said not just the people, but media and political parties are also waiting to see the actual turnout.

"It means that some game is going on. There are only 70 constituencies. Even states with more constituencies announce the turnout on the same day."

Meanwhile, the Delhi Chief Electoral Officer has not reacted. He is likely to make a statement later on Sunday. The poll results will be announced on Tuesday (February 11).
 

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