EC denies report of Mizoram chief electoral officer’s removal

New Delhi: The Election Commission of India (ECI) on Friday denied reports of Mizoram’s Chief Electoral Officer (CEO) SB Shashank’s removal.

“We will be assessing Deputy Election Commissioner Sudeep Jain’s report in the matter who went to the poll-bound state,” the Election Commission said.

The poll body is likely to meet on Saturday to discuss Jain’s report on demands of Shashank’s removal.

It was earlier reported that the agitating Mizoram NGO Coordinating Committee (MNCC) said that the poll body has assured them to remove Shashank.

On November 5, amid protests in Mizoram demanding the removal of Shashank, the ECI had urged the Mizoram government to take all possible measures required to ensure peaceful polls in the state.
The ECI, in a letter to the Mizoram government, had also informed that the Principal Secretary (Home) L Chuaungo has been removed from his post after observing the sequence of past two months and his role in great detail.

Chuaungo’s removal came after Shashank had earlier complained to the ECI about the interference of the state in the upcoming assembly elections. He had also mentioned Chuaungo’s alleged involvement in the revision of the electoral rolls and using the Central Armed Police Forces (CAPF).

The people of Mizoram have been protesting against Shashank, alleging that he is biased in conducting the upcoming Mizoram Assembly Elections.

In the complaint letter, Shashank had mentioned the alleged insensitivity regarding voting rights of the Bru community of Mizoram, who stay in relief camps in Tripura.

Mizoram Chief Minister Lal Thanhawla had also written to Prime Minister Narendra Modi demanding Shashank’s removal.

On Wednesday, the ECI had constituted a high-level team, led by Deputy Election Commissioner Sudeep Jain, to discuss various issues related to upcoming assembly polls in the state.

Mizoram will go to polls on November 28, while the results will be declared on December 11. It is the only state in the North-East where the Congress party is currently in power.