Kerala Crime Branch to probe voter list leak

Thiruvananthapuram: In a surprise move, the Kerala Crime Branch police has decided to probe into a complaint that the voters' list was leaked ahead of the assembly polls held here on April 6.

The probe was initiated after the Joint Chief Electoral Officer (JCEO) registered a complaint that the list containing 2.67 crores Kerala voters have been leaked.

Crime Branch SP Shah Nawaz will be heading the probe and the charges include sections of the IT Act which includes conspiracy and theft.

"We have filed a complaint with the police as we suspect that our computer was hacked and data were leaked. It seems someone had helped in leaking the data from the computer used by Keltron staff who were deputed to the CEO office during the election," a senior source from the CEO office told PTI on Saturday.

Keltron aided the Commission in data management and security.

Ahead of the April 6 assembly elections, then Leader of Opposition Ramesh Chennithala had met Chief Electoral Officer Teeka Ram Meena and registered a complaint about widespread complaints of the voters list being rigged and had alleged that this was part of a conspiracy.

He had on March 31 also released details of 4.3 lakh voters whose names were allegedly figured multiple times in the voters' list through a website named ""\

Chennithala alleged that on perusal of the voters list it has come to light that the same person in one constituency has been given multiple election identity cards, with slight changes in the address and other details, but the photo is the same.

He further alleged that there appeared to be a concerted effort in manipulating the voters list, as this discrepancy has been identified in numerous constituencies.

The ruling CPI(M) had on April 1 accused Chennithala of "leaking" the personal data of Kerala voters to a foreign-based website by publishing the information from its IP address registered in Singapore.

Reacting to the fresh news of the probe being announced, Chennithala said "this probe seems to be an eyewash as all know that there was no leakage of the voters list as everything is there on the website".

"This probe is to divert attention from the real issue on how the numerous duplication in the list has taken place.

"All wish to know how this rigging took place and that's what has to be probed.

"Through the new probe, none will be able to find out who are the real villains as this probe is meant to find out how the list was leaked and this is a pointless exercise," said Chennithala.

The crime branch has registered the FIR invoking various provisions of the IPC including conspiracy and the IT Act.

(With inputs from IANS and PTI)

The comments posted here/below/in the given space are not on behalf of Onmanorama. The person posting the comment will be in sole ownership of its responsibility. According to the central government's IT rules, obscene or offensive statement made against a person, religion, community or nation is a punishable offense, and legal action would be taken against people who indulge in such activities.