The second phase of polling in the local elections in Kerala was disrupted due to faulty Electronic Voting Machines (EVMs) in Malappuram district on Thursday.
The number of faulty EVMs is thought to be around 250 while the Election Commission of the state has sought an explanation from respective district officials and police and asked if there were any intention to disrupt the elections.
According to reports, the faults were not detected during the mock polling conducted 30 minutes prior to the actual polling.
In most of the faulty machines paper pieces, stickers and adhesive tapes were found to cause the problem amidst speculations of sabotage.
However, in this district, traditionally the Congress and Muslim League fare well. Although, both the parties are allies, they field separate candidates for the local polls and hence, is thought to be a friendly war zone.
Alappuzha, Thrissur, Pathanamthitta, Ernakulam, Kottayam, Malappuram and Palakkad are the seven districts that were due to go for polls in the second phase on Thursday after the other seven witnessed more than 75 percent turnout on Monday.
In reply to the Election Commissionâ€™s query, Collector T Bhaskaran attributed the faulty machines to the respective officials who he claimed did not learn to operate the machines.
Reacting to this matter, CM Oommen Chandy assured of an immediate probe.
Update: Following the Election Commissionâ€™s query, a special branch of Kerala police has disregarded the possibility of intentional disruption of elections, while the Election Commission still remains unconvinced.