Jaffna polling directions deemed appropriate
[TamilNet, Thursday, 16 December 1999, 04:19 GMT]
Acting Commissioner of Election D. B. Dasanayaka has given relevant directions to the Jaffna District Returning Officer in order to ensure a free and fair Presidential Poll, Deputy Solicitor General Saleem Marsoof told the Court of Appeal on Wednesday.
He was addressing Court on a petition filed by petitioner S. Paramapatham.
Mr. Marsoof submitted that the Court could be satisfied that appropriate steps had been taken.
Mr. Marsoof also forwarded a copy of the relevant circular for perusal by Court.
Justice Asoka de Silva presiding over the sessions indicated the contents of the circular were satisfactory. President's Counsel Shibly Aziz told Court that in view of the assurance given to Court, his client would withdraw the petition.
The petitioner sought a ruling directing the Polling Officers and the Returning officers serving in Jaffna District to ensure that ballot papers are issued only to registered voters whose identity have been duly ascertained.
The petition also sought that these election officers are advised to prevent tampering with ballot boxes.
In his petition, Paramapatham states that during the 1998 and 1999 election there had been incidents of intimidation of voters, impersonation, storming of polling booths and violence.
He further states it is reasonably apprehended that these could take place on a larger scale in Jaffna during the present polls.