In a first of its kind in India’s electoral history, the Election Commission decided to rescind the notification and conduct polls afresh ‘in due course of time’ to two Tamil Nadu Assembly seats after evidence of use of money to influence voters.
On two occasions earlier, EC postponed polls to Aravkurichi and Tanjavur Assembly seats after reports of large scale distribution of money and gifts to voters by the candidates and political parties.
Initially, polls were deferred from May 16 to May 23. On May 21, EC had decided to once again delay the polls to June 13.
The state went to Assembly polls on May 16 when AIADMK returned to power for a second straight term.
The Election Commission said it took the decision after going through reports of observers, special teams of central observers, report of the special team of observers of Aravkurichi and Tanjavur constituencies and representations of contesting candidates.
It mostly takes such a harsh step when there are indications that muscle power has been used to influence voters. But cancelling elections following use of money to persuade voters was perhaps never heard before.