Mumbai: 700 'missing' voting slips cause panic in Bandra East

The returning officer of the constituency called the cops after his booth level officer told him locals had forcefully snatched the voting slips from him; the slips were later found with the booth officer itself

Where did 700 voting slips go? This was the question plaguing the Returning Officer (RO) of Bandra East constituency on the weekend, after his booth level officer complained that local residents had forcefully taken the slips from him on Saturday. The RO filed a complaint with the Nirmal Nagar police, but it was later revealed that the slips hadn’t, in fact, been taken. They were with the booth officer in his house.

Representation Pic

Y Bhalerao, the RO of Bandra East, was informed by his booth level officer, Makhan Singh Randhawa, who was in-charge of distributing 3,000 voting slips, that nearly 700 of the slips had been snatched from him. He told Bhalerao that, as he started to go home after finishing his duty hours, some residents of Behrampada accosted him and took away the slips. A panicked Bhalerao immediately lodged a complaint with the Nirmal Nagar police, asking them to investigate what became of the slips. The matter even reached the suburban collector and deputy collector, and the RO was quite worried, as a voting slip is an important document for polling.

However, the matter was solved soon enough. On Sunday, police went to Behrampada to make enquiries, and learnt that residents had indeed visited the booth office to ask for their slips. However, Randhawa had simply gone home and that there had been no tussle as he had alleged.

Sudhir Gaikwad, senior police inspector at Nirmal Nagar police station, said, “We made enquiries with residents. When we called up and asked the booth officer where he was, he told us he was at home. The voting slips were also with him. This was probably some trick on his part to escape from work early. No snatching of slips happened, as he told his seniors.”

When mid-day asked Bhalerao about the police’s findings, he said, “They haven’t informed us about these enquiries. If this is what they found, then they (police) should take action against whoever is guilty.”

No voting slip? no problem
The Election Commission (EC) grants permission to all those whose names are there on the electoral list of the EC. The voting slips are delivered to you at your place, but if you do not have voting slips, you can get it at the polling booths from the booth level officers by showing your election card.

If you do not have an election card, you can show the following as identity proof
>> Passport
>> Driving Licence
>> Government employee’s staff ID
>> Bank/post passbook along with a photograph on it
>> PAN card
>> Aadhar card
>> Smart card (given under National Population Register)
>> Mahatma Gandhi Rashtriya Gramin Rozgaar Yojana card
>> Retirement card with photo
>> Voters slip
>> ESIS card

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