A massive protest erupted outside the Raj Bhawan in Mizoram capital Aizawl demanding the removal of Chief Electoral Officer SB Shashank.

The protests were being led by the influential Young Mizo Association and other civil society groups.

It was a sea of people all around as thousands gathered outside the Raj Bhawan to take part in the sit-in demonstration calling for the ouster of the CEO.

Thousands have gathered outside the Raj Bhawan demanding the immediate removal of the CEO whose style of functioning has not gone down well with the civil society groups, NGOs and according to reports even the bureaucrats of the state.

All shops and commercial establishments are also closed in Aizawl in the wake of the sit-in demonstration outside the Governor’s house.  With almost nil attendance in most of the government offices of the state capital.

The joint NGO coordination committee had served a November 5 deadline for CEO Shashank to leave the state.

The NGOs are unhappy over the CEO’s dealing with the state bureaucrats and his proposed move to ensure maximum Bru refugees participation in the electoral process.

Earlier, Mizoram Chief Minister Lal Thanhawla shot off a letter to Prime Minister Narendra Modi yesterday calling for the immediate removal of the Election officer.

In his letter to the Prime Minister, Lal Thanhawla said the people of the state have lost confidence on the CEO and his removal is a must for smooth conduct of the November 28 Assembly polls.

Shashank had raised questions over the functioning of the state Principal Secretary L Chuango leading to his transfer.

In the letter to the PM, Lal Thanhawla stated that the handling of the forthcoming Assembly election process has left much to be desired.

His handling of things, Lal Thanhawla said, has irked the NGOs and the civil society including the state’s own election watchdog Mizoram People’s Forum.

The chief minister even suggested that the Additional CEO can take charge for the time being if getting a replacement for the CEO required more time.