A candidate contesting from the Hyderabad Lok Sabha constituency has sought the intervention of the Chief Justice of India (CJI) to ensure that details of the number of votes recorded in all polling booths, where elections have already taken place in the first five phases, be put up in the public domain. The candidate quoted a former union secretary who said that Form 17C data of voters is entered booth-wise in ECI's ENCORE web-based software.

"Data is available with them (Election Commission) at the press of a button. How can they then say that they don't have actual numbers of votes cast?" Sanjeev Gupta, ex-secretary to the government of India in the home ministry had asked on social media platform X on May 18.

In an email addressed to both CJI and Chief Election Commissioner (CEC) on May 21, the candidate, Lubna Sarwath, pointed out that till date, no information pertaining to 'FORM 17C PART I ACCOUNT OF VOTES RECORDED' of all the polling booths of five phases of elections has been uploaded on website.

The candidate pointed out that consolidated tabulated booth-wise data of voters (male/female/others) is not available for public consumption. She also said critical information scrutinised by the returning officer after receiving booth-wise Form 17A and other documents immediately the next day of election day is not available in the public domain.

These include the 'Annexure I Polling Station Data for Scrutiny Decision' and the 'Annexure II Recommendation of Returning Officer for Re-poll after scrutiny of Form 17A and other documents'.

The email cited the SC orders that all the information sought should be available for public knowledge as per existing Acts & Rules. The candidate approached CJI to initiate steps to penalise responsible officials as per the due procedure for the concealment of data from the public in contempt of apex court orders and against existing Acts and Rules.

She termed dereliction of duty through concealing information in the largest exercise of franchise in the world as an affront to the poor and rich alike who trust in Indian democracy.

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