As polling for the first phase of the 15th Lok Sabha elections began on Thursday, an election commissioner said that the poll panel has not been able to contain money power in the election process, though the noose has been tightened on criminal elements, relatively speaking.
Election Commissioner SY Qureshi admitted that money has been exchanging hands during the campaign.
"We believe we have failed in doing that (stopping cash for votes). Money power is (something) we have not been able to control," Qureshi said in reply to a question on the news channel CNN-IBN.
"Only when we observe something happening through media do we come down heavily. Lots of money is changing hands. We have not been able to control it," he said.
The election commissioner denied charges of going overboard in ensuring security in the polls, saying making appropriate security arrangements is the constitutional mandate of the body.