CEO directs state police to probe into bogus voter ID cards used in Youth Cong elections

| Updated: 17 November, 2023 6:17 pm IST

Thiruvananthapuram: The Youth Congress elections in the state landed in a controversy after the Chief Electoral Officer (CEO) directed the state police chief to inquire into complaints that bogus Voter ID cards were used by electors as proof of identity to fraudulently exercise their franchise in the organisational polls, on Friday.

CEO’s office in its statement has stated that the state police chief has been asked to inquire whether such bogus ID cards were printed and if true, to identify the culprits.

The BJP and the DYFI has demanded an investigation into the matter, however Congress has denied any fraudulent activity in the elections held.

As per the complaint, the fraud was conducted by a mobile application that artificially created fake ID cards for the election. Allegedly, this was done to register bogus votes in favour of particular candidates.

“The online election process was supposed to uphold the sanctity of a democratic system. However, the election process was hijacked by vested interests to promote their candidates. Especially in the district of Trivandrum and the State Presidentship, undeserving candidates received fake votes so that democratic mandate was disturbed by maleficient actors,” the letter read. 

A Youth Congress functionary who spoke to The New Indian said that fake identity cards were widely used to add names to the electoral roll. 

“This was done using a special mobile phone application.  After opening the App, a photo and the name of the user should be registered, but when it comes to providing the voter-ID card, a false ID number is given to many people including the candidates”, the YC functionary said.

It was the Bharatiya Janata Party based in Kerala who had made the initial allegations against the Youth Congress in this case. 

“A faction in the Congress party in Kerala has made up bogus voter ID cards for the Youth Congress polls. It is a very serious offence. These artificially created fake voter ID cards can be used in general elections. It can also be used as SIM cards. A congress MLA in the state is directly involved in the matter. An MLA in Bangalore provided assistance for this. Both AICC president and Rahul Gandhi had received the complaint on this. It is a very serious issue”, said BJP state president K Surendran.

Hours after the allegations were made, Congress denied the charges made against them.

“K Surendran, the accused in the election bribery case, has no right to teach us patriotism. The election procedure was transparent. We are looking to take legal action against the BJP leader who has made this statement”, said Shafi Parambil, Congress leader and Palakkad MLA.

Meanwhile, Communist Party of India (Marxist) state secretary MV Govindan highlighted that the matter is serious, urging the Election Commission to take cognisance of the matter.

Following the developments, Rahul Mamkoottahtil was elected as the state president of the Kerala Youth Congress and Abin Varkey came second, being elected as the Vice President.

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