Gangtok, 18 Apr:
Centre for the Study of Developing Societies [CSDS] Sikkim state coordinator, Dr Mukund Giri and his associates issued a press release today regarding the post poll survey CSDS was conducting in the State.
A joint press release issued by Dr Giri, investigator, Santosh Basnet and translator, Dr Parasmani Dangal of CSDS Sikkim, states that the survey has not violated the Model Code of Conduct at all since it was not an exit poll. The notification of the Election Commission prohibits exit polls and does not mention post poll survey, the release states.
“There is a difference between post poll survey and exit poll. An exit poll is done immediately after polling but post poll survey is done after few days by going house to house,” the release clarifies.
The professors have added that the survey was done a few days after polling to get correct data and information.
The release states that the survey is not and will never be supported by any political party because it is an academic practice by an independent research organisation. All questions in the survey were formulated by CSDS headquarters which was translated into Nepali for Sikkim, it is mentioned.
“We are not associated with any political group and this survey is not associated with any political party. If anyone finds that the survey is associated with any political party in the future then we are ready to face any punishment,” the release states.
The professors, however, have apologised for not communicating with the officials and department of Sikkim State and Central Universities with regard to engaging college students in the survey. They inform that the organization had directly contacted interested students of the universities for conducting the survey.
Providing the credentials of CSDS, the three professors have said that since 1963, the organization has been working in the fields of analyzing electoral politics, comparative study of Indian cultural and political issues, democratic politics and other issues.
“We feel proud to work for such a reputed organization,” the release stated.
The harassment faced by students involved in the survey will discourage them in conducting surveys in future and this would be a big loss for Sikkim, the release adds.