Mizoram: Presbyterians want change in polling date

October 7, 2013 by  
Filed under newsletter-india

Nirvachan SadanMizoram, October 07, 2013: The polls in the state are slated to be held on Dec. 4 and counting on Dec. 8.

Presbyterian Church of India’s Mizoram Synod has appealed to the election authorities to change the polling and counting dates of the Mizoram assembly elections.

The appeal has been made as the two dates fall on important days of the church.

The polls in the state are slated to be held on Dec 4 and counting on Dec. 8.

A four-member team of Presbyterian Church leaders led by Rev Lalzuithanga, executive secretary of the Mizoram Synod met state chief electoral officer (CEO) Ashwini Kumar Saturday and informed him that Dec. 4 coincides with the holding of Synod – the highest authority of the church.

Sources in the Mizoram Synod said they intimated Kumar and other state election department officials that the church had been asking all its members to exercise franchise as the Election Commission also wanted a high turnout and mass participation in the electoral process.

“We informed the CEO that if the polling is held on Dec. 4 as announced by the Election Commission, about 3,000 people, including priests, church leaders and delegates from across the state would not be able to cast their votes,” Rev Lalzuithanga said, adding that they appealed to the officials to change the polling day.

The church leaders also said Sunday being a holiday for majority of the Christians, they found that by fixing Sunday as the day for counting of votes, it would cause inconvenience and hurt the sentiments of people in the Christian-dominated state.

State election department officials reportedly told the church leaders that the matter was in the hands of the Election Commission of India and they would convey the sentiments of the church leaders to the EC.

On their part, the church leaders said they would send a representation to the Election Commission on the issue by next week.

Meanwhile, former chief minister Zoramthanga, chief of the main opposition Mizo National Front (MNF), also echoed the church’s sentiments saying that the Election Commission, if possible should change the date of polling and counting.

“This will be the best way to ensure high poll turnout and avoid hurting the sentiments of the religious minorities in the country,” Zoramthanga said.

Congress leader Zodintluanga, who is also minister for sports and youth services, said the best thing would be to change the dates to satisfy all sections of people.

– times of india

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