Altogether 57,065 bogus voters were deleted from the electoral rolls as a part of an exercise which began in November 2022, according to CEO office in Imphal.
A legal team of Manipur Pradesh Congress Committee (MPCC) had complained to the state CEO on the presence of 1,33,553 photo-similar entries (PSE) in the electoral rolls across 60 assembly constituencies of the state.
Speaking to the Imphal Free Press, Joint CEO Ramananda Nongmeikappam said the state CEO office had started the process of purification of electoral rolls under the guidance of the Election Commission of India (ECI) and it was completed in March this year.
The purification, which began in November 2022, was done with the removal of repeat or multiple entries or repeat EPIC numbers, entries of the dead voters at polling station level of Manipur.
In the process, 57,065 voters were deleted from the electoral rolls and it was already informed through the media while publishing the final photo electoral roll of 2023.
As of now, a total 57,065 electors have been deleted out of 1,33,553 PSE with 42.7 per cent of deletion from a total of 20,57,854 electorate.
Senapati district tops the list as out of 40951 photo similar entries (PSE), 19774 electoral rolls were deleted; the lowest was Bishnupur district where 1317 electoral rolls have been deleted out of 2643 photo similar entries, the Joint CEO informed.
In Imphal West district, out of 5603 PSE-2226 electoral rolls have been deleted; 2938 out of 6149 PSE in Imphal East; 2279 out of 5053 PSE in Thoubal; 6844 out of 14432 PSE in Chandel; 5081 out of 12031 PSE in Ukhrul; 2353 out of 8222 PSE in Kangpokpi; 4940 out of 14034 PSE in Tamenglong; 9230 out of 24159 PSE in from Churachandpur and 83 out of 276 PSE-83 in Jiribam.
Nongmeikapam further informed that the purification was started in the third week of November 2022 and the Electoral Registration Officers (ERO) and Booth Level Officers (BLO) of every district and polling stations were instructed to list out probable repeated entries and voters with repeated EPIC numbers and dead voters and to exchange relevant information.
The Joint CEO said that the ECI will run the entire voters list through Electoral Rolls Services Net (ERONet) to detect duplicate or bogus voters by analysing similar entries, photos and names. The software will eliminate multiple entries of voters’ names in different constituencies and BLOs would then verify the residence details of the respective voters and remove the other entries from the electoral list, he added.
He explained that the ERO will see the records of duplicate entries cluster by cluster and download the checklist for each cluster. EROs will be assigning a checklist to the BLO (booth level officer) for processing through the app. Moreover, BLOs will have to fill the field verification report through the app and will be submitted to the ERO, he said.
Further, he explained that PSEs are multiple cards with the picture of the same voter. A voter in possession of such multiple cards could vote as many times as the number of cards he possesses. Not only photo similar entries but also deleted absentee or dead voters, photo not matching elector, the Joint CEO said.
“In case of PSE, two or three or four photos have been uploaded from different polling stations or from different constituencies. In such cases, only one is fake and the BLO will identify or if required, field verification will be conducted and when the correct one has been identified, the remaining fake electoral rolls will be deleted”, said Ramananda.
He said a reply will be given to the Manipur Pradesh Congress Committee soon.
The ECI launched the “National Electoral Roll Purification (NERP) 2016” to improve the health of electoral rolls and optimize the polling station location and area.
The ECI decided to launch a special drive for purification of the electoral rolls by removal of repeat/multiple entries, repeat EPIC No and entries of the dead voters at polling station level of every state.