“Zero-Tolerance Policy Towards Misuse Of Money In Elections,” CEC

Date:

KD NEWS SERVICE

CHENNAI, Feb 24: Chief Election Commissioner Rajiv Kumar on Saturday issued a stern warning to political parties, emphasizing a “zero-tolerance policy” towards the “misuse of money” during the upcoming Lok Sabha elections.

CEC chief accompanied by senior officials of the Election Commission of India, on Friday commenced his two-day review of Tamil Nadu’s preparedness for the Lok Sabha elections.

Addressing a press conference CEC chief on Saturday asserted that the Election Commission determines to ensure free, fair, and transparent elections.

“The Commission is extremely determined and all the collectors, all the enforcement agencies have been told about this that we want an inducement free elections. Free, fair, and transparent elections,” CEC Rajiv Kumar said.

CEC unequivocally declared the Commission’s zero tolerance towards the misuse of money, distribution of money, or distribution of freebies in any form, emphasizing a commitment to conducting elections free from inducement.

“And by inducement we mean the misuse of money in the elections would not be tolerated. The commission is absolutely zero tolerance towards the misuse of money and distribution of money,” he added.

The Chief Election Commissioner emphasized the commitment to ensure minimum facilities at providing at all polling stations.

“These facilities include provisions for drinking water, electricity, toilets, ramps, and wheelchairs. The move aims not only to facilitate a smoother electoral process but also to showcase the capabilities of individuals from diverse backgrounds who will be actively involved in managing the booths,” he added.

Expressing the Commission’s resolve, Kumar stated that the Commission is extremely determined, and all collectors, along with enforcement agencies, have been instructed that we aspire for inducement-free elections.

In the progressive initiative, the Chief Election Commissioner of India said that for the upcoming polls, some of the booths will be managed by PwD employees, some by women and some by youth.

“We will have some booths managed by PwD employees, some by women and some by youth. This is to empower them… It is a demonstration of their capabilities and empowerment,” he added.

ECI chief said that the poll body had a detailed review of election preparedness for the last two days.

“TN has a long history of local governance and tradition of democracy. I appeal to you all voters of TN to come in big numbers to join the festival of democracy,” he added.

He further informed that the commission is extremely determined and wants inducement-free elections like distribution of money and usage of money.

“In Tamil Nadu, there are 6.19 crore election voters of which 3.4 crore are male, 3.15 crore are female and 8294 are Transgender. First-time voters 18 and 19 age are 9.18 lakh voters in the state,” he added.

He further said that the political parties demanded that permissions for the rally and entitlements that these political parties have been given on an equal footing.

“CCTV cameras should be put in the most extended area possible on polling booths. CRPF should be deployed in the sensitive booths. Many parties demanded that elections be conducted in one phase. They also wanted strict actions against the impersonation cases that people try to do during voting,” he added.

The Commission held meetings with representatives of political parties in the state. The review meetings were also held with District Collectors and Superintendents of Police, the officials said.

CEC Rajiv Kumar, along with Election Commissioner Arun Goel and other key officials, arrived in Chennai to oversee the preparatory activities. Their visit was part of the Election Commission’s effort to ensure the integrity and transparency of the electoral process.

The delegation met representatives from various recognised political parties. The discussions encompassed crucial aspects such as polling station arrangements, and the implementation of the electoral code of conduct. (Agencies)

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