While the Punjab State Election Commission on Thursday ordered re-polling for the Zila Parishad and Panchayat Samitis in 53 polling booths of eight districts across the State, the Shiromani Akali Dal termed the elections as “murder of democracy”, alleging that the government machinery functioned as extension counters of the ruling Congress party during the entire poll process.‘Murder of democracy’Veteran Akali leader and former Punjab Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal said that the way the Zila Parishad and Panchayat polls held on September 19 were rigged in Punjab, it was “a daylight murder of democracy”.“September 19, 2018 will be remembered as one of the darkest days for democracy in Punjab when the state machinery functioned as extension counters of the Congress party during the entire poll process,” alleged Mr. Badal.According to the spokesperson of the State Election Commission, re-polling has been ordered in 36 polling booths of Muktsar Sahib, 8 polling booths in Amritsar, one booth each in Moga, Fazilka and Faridkot districts and two booths each in Patiala and Bathinda and Ludhiana districts. Repolling todayVoters can recast their votes on September 21 in these polling stations from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m.Shiromani Akali Dal leaders Bikram Singh Majithia and Daljeet Cheema alleged that the State government had decided to register a case against party president Sukhbir Badal as part of the political vendetta drive unleashed by it against political opponents.“Mr. Sukhbir Badal would not file for anticipatory bail in the political vendetta case registered against him. We, on our part, will not be cowed down by such tactics and will continue to fight for peace and communal harmony in Punjab,” said Mr. Majithia.The police had registered a case against Mr. Sukhbir Badal and few party workers on Wednesday for allegedly thrashing a Congress worker at Killianwali village in Muktsar district during the Zila Parishad and Panchayat Samiti polls. A case under Sections 341 (punishment for wrongful restraint), 323 (punishment for voluntarily causing hurt) and 506 (punishment for criminal intimidation) under the IPC was registered.