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Fake voters dot Badals’ battleground Bathinda
Charanjit Bhullar
Tribune News Service

Border trouble
Over 150 fake votes have been identified in the Bathinda parliamentary constituency
Harsimrat and Manpreet Badal are pitted against each other in this constituency
Most of these fake votes are in Bathinda villages that share their boundary with Haryana villages

Bathinda, April 20
Reports of fake votes in the Bathinda parliamentary constituency, where Harsimrat Badal and Manpreet Badal are pitted against each other, have sent the authorities into damage control mode.

Most cases have been detected in Bathinda villages bordering Haryana. Over 150 fake votes have been reportedly identified in Kanakwal, Bangi Nihal Singh, Bagha and Gyana villages of the Talwandi Sabo Assembly segment so far. These villages are situated close to Chamal, Desu and Taruana villages of Haryana’s Sirsa district.

Kanakwal village in Bathinda has over 90 voters who are also registered in Haryana. Talwandi Sabo SDM Rajesh Kumar Sharma admitted that there were reports of fake votes in the area. “We have already detected 70 fake votes and a process has been initiated to ensure that these votes are not polled on the voting day. We are scrutinising all such suspected cases,” he said.

Kanakwal village has 1,373 registered voters. As per electoral rolls, 20 voters (vote numbers 3 to 22) live in house numbers 1 and 2 of this village.

However, these two houses don’t actually exist. All voters registered on these addresses are also registered as voters as residents of Kheowali Dahni in Chamal village of Sirsa district (vote numbers 628 to 649).

Jagraj Singh and five members of his family (vote numbers 266, 269 to 273) are registered as voters in Kanakwal village. The house number mentioned against their names actually belongs to Katar Singh, but he doesn’t know who Jagraj Singh is. Scrutiny of electoral rolls in Kheowali village of Haryana shows that Jagraj Singh is also a voter there. He is shown as a resident of house number 110 of Kheowali village there.

Harbans Singh and three others are registered as voters in Kanakwal village. They are also registered as voters at Taruana village (house number 50) in Haryana. Gursewak Singh and his wife Harbans Kaur, who are registered as voters in Kanakwal, are also registered as voters in Bangalore.

Balkar Singh is registered as a voter on the address (house No. 199) of Malook Singh of Kanakwal village. But Malook Singh doesn’t know any Balkar Singh, who is also shown as a voter in Desu village of Haryana. Chander, Kamlesh Rani and Ashwani Kumar, who are registered as voters of ward No. 6 of Kanakwal have their actual residence at house No. 655 of Sector 6 in Hisar, Haryana.

“We are scrutinising the voter lists to identify voters who might also have been enrolled in Haryana,” said Charanjit Singh, Booth Level Officer (BLO) in Kanakwal.





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