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Delhi resident uses election to settle scores with neighbours

Onkar Singh in New Delhi | March 02, 2004 18:18 IST

Delhi's Chief Electoral Officer Arun Goyal has asked Ram Prasad Pandey, a resident of Oberoi Apartments on Alipur Road, to explain why criminal action should not be taken against him for seeking deletion of two names from the electoral rolls on the basis of false information.

Pandey had demanded that the names of photographer Ram Rehman and Supreme Court advocate Sona Khan should be deleted from Delhi's electoral rolls since they did not live in the addresses provided by them.

However, Election Commission officials who visited the two addresses to verify the complaint found that the two persons residing there.

Ram Rehman was taken aback when told about the complaint. In a letter to the Delhi CEO dated February 26, 2004, he demanded action against Pandey for filing a false complaint.

"I had asked district election officer (north Delhi region) Chandrakar Bharti to go into the complaint lodged by photographer Ram Rehman. Investigations have revealed that there was a deliberate attempt to mislead the election office. The persons concerned are residing at the addresses they have mentioned," Goyal told rediff.com.

Pandey turned out to be the servant of S S Agarwal, who had once contested the assembly election on a Bharatiya Janata Party ticket and is a neighbour of Rehman and Khan.

"We have initiated action against Pandey. If convicted under the Representation of People's Act 1950, the accused could be imprisoned for six months," Goyal said.

"I am happy that action is being taken against the person who tried to mislead the office of Delhi's chief electoral officer. It strengthens my belief that if you pursue your complaint, there are people and institutions who would uphold the law," an elated Ram Rehman told rediff.com.

This was not the first time that the Delhi CEO has come across such a case. People file such complaints to settle petty scores. "We had initiated similar action against some persons last year as well," Goyal said.

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