Mumbai: Shiv Sena (UBT) MLC Potnis, guard booked for entering LS poll counting centre on Jun 4

Vilas Potnis
Vilas Potnis

Mumbai | Shiv Sena (UBT) MLC Vilas Potnis and a police personnel guarding him were booked for alleged unauthorised entry into a counting centre in Goregaon in Mumbai on June 4, when Lok Sabha results were being announced, an official said on Monday.

The incident took place at NESCO centre while counting of votes of the Mumbai North West Lok Sabha seat was underway, the official said.

"A case was registered on Sunday against Potnis and his police security guard under section 188 of the Indian Penal Code and provisions of Representation of the People Act. He is accused of entering the counting centre along with (losing) Shiv Sena (UBT) candidate Amol Kirtikar," the official said.

The official said Prajakta Mahale, the polling representative of winning Shiv Sena candidate Ravindra Waikar, took objection against Potnis and his security personnel.

"Poll officials asked Potnis and the guard to go out immediately. Mahale also filed a complaint on the issue with the Mumbai North West Lok Sabha seat returning officer. The police case was filed on Sunday on the complaint of one Nandkumar Deshmukh," he said.

Defending himself, Potnis said, "I entered the counting centre unknowingly. There was high security at the centre but no one stopped me. If anybody had brought it to my notice that I am not supposed to enter, I would have immediately stopped."

"When the returning officer announced my name (on seeing his presence in the counting centre), I immediately went out within a minute," Potnis asserted.

The counting process of the Mumbai North West Lok Sabha seat, which was won by Waikar by just 48 votes, is in the centre of a controversy following media reports that his kin allegedly used a mobile phone to "unlock" an EVM.

The unlocking allegations have been rubbished by poll and police officials, while Waikar's kin has been booked for allegedly carrying a mobile phone inside the counting centre.

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