Election department awaits ECI’s reply on NPP candidate’s status
SHILLONG: Following the de-recognition of the National People's Party by the Election Commission of India recently, the election department of Meghalaya is in a quandary whether or not to allow the NPP's candidate, Phillipole D Marak to contest for the Chokpot Assembly by poll where voting is scheduled to take place on June 27 .
Meghalaya Chief Electoral Officer P. Naik informed that the department has sought a clarification in this regard from the ECI and the matter will be cleared only after the department gets an official direction from the ECI.
The NPP, a party founded by Former Meghalaya chief minister and Lok Sabha Speaker P.A. Sangma has become India's first party to be de-recognised and it may be reminded that the Election Commission (EC) has suspended the NPP's recognition for failing to submit accounts of poll-related expenses during last year's Lok Sabha elections.
The EC had reminded the NPP twice after the deadline for filing accounts expired on August 26, 2014 and a show-caused was served to the party on March 17, following which it was given a deadline of April 15, which was extended by a month. But despite the extended deadlines, the NPP failed to comply with the ECI's norm.
Five candidates are in the fray for the Chokpot bypoll including two women–congress candidate Bluebell R Sangma and Garo National Council candidate Kalpana D Sangma besides National Peoples Party contestant Phillipole D Marak and independent candidates Seconton K Sangma and T R Marak.
Naik informed that considering the vulnerability of this area, the state Election Office has sought deployment of additional 8 companies of the central reserve para military force in the constituency in which over 22,000 voters will exercise their franchise in 46 polling stations.