Election Commission of India (ECI). (File Photo: IANS). Image Source: IANS News

Mumbai, Sep 18 : The Election Commission of India (ECI) has deleted 2.16 lakh bogus voters in Maharashtra and the process is on to strike off more such fake names, the state Congress was informed here on Wednesday.

Ahead of the upcoming state assembly polls, the Maharashtra Congress submitted a list of 44.61 alleged fake voters in the state and reiterated its demand to conduct the elections on ballot papers instead of electronic voting machines (EVMs).

"The EC has told us that while 2.16 lakh fake names of voters have already been deleted, the process is underway to cancel the rest," state Congress general secretary Rajesh Sharma said.

A delegation led by Sharma and the party's Legal Cell's official Adv. Gauri Chhabria called on the CEC Sunil Arora, Election Commissioner Ashok Lavasa and Sunil Chandra to put forth their demands prior to the elections.

The CEC delegation is in Mumbai to review the pre-election preparedness and met various stakeholders including the state elections officials, police and civil officers, representatives of all political parties to understand their issues, problems and demands.

After the CEC's assurance, Sharma and Chhabria said the names of all the remaining bogus voters, which the party had highlighted earlier this year, should be deleted from the electoral rolls on priority and that EVMs should be replaced with the traditional ballot paper voting.

"Last February, before the Lok Sabha elections, the Congress had submitted the list to the EC, but to date, all the fake voters' names have not been knocked off the rolls", Sharma told mediapersons later.

He pointed out that there should be no further delay on the part of the EC in this serious matter as it can help ensure free, fair and transparent elections.

The Shiv Sena and Nationalist Congress Party also sought a hike in the election expenditure limits, while the NCP urged for a return to ballot paper voting, said national spokesperson Nawab Malik.

Sharma and Malik reiterated that the voters have lost faith in the EVMs and all the opposition political parties have been demanding the use of ballot papers in the state assembly elections.

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