Examine whether malpractice happened with special ballots: HC on Perinthalmanna election

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Kochi: Kerala High Court has directed the authorities concerned to examine whether malpractice happened with special ballots (including postal votes) of the 2021 legislative assembly election from the Perinthalmanna constituency.

The interim order came while HC was considering the plea filed by LDF independent candidate in the poll, KPM Mustafa, questioning the victory of UDF’s Najeeb Kanthapuram. Najeeb had won the Assembly election by a narrow margin of 38 votes. The petitioner pointed out that 340 postal votes have not been counted citing technical issues. Musthafa alleged that there was no reason for rejecting 348 votes and no protocols were followed for the same. He also demanded the court declare him as MLA in the constituency.

Later it came to light that one of the postal ballot boxes had gone missing from the treasury office and was later recovered from another office.

The box went missing from the strongroom of the Perinthalmanna sub-registrar office and was later recovered from the office of the District Joint Registrar of Cooperative Societies. The box was produced before the court.

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