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Come clear: EC

NOT SATISFIED with their claims on poll expenditures, the Election Commission is learnt to have served notices on three main candidates of the Budhni by elections, including Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan seeking explanation.

india Updated: May 06, 2006 13:56 IST

NOT SATISFIED with their claims on poll expenditures, the Election Commission is learnt to have served notices on three main candidates of the Budhni by elections, including Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan seeking explanation.

According to sources, the Chief Minister submitted the poll account to the district returning officer showing Rs 4.74 lakh as total expenditure on campaign. His Congress rival Raj Kumar Patel showed even less amount. Gondwana Gantantra Party (GGP) candidate Guljar Singh Markam’s poll expenditure is also well below Rs five lakh. The upper limit of expenditure for a candidate in a Vidhan Sabha election is Rs 10 lakh.

The Election Commission observers are not convinced by the candidates’ claims on expenditure. According to sources, expenditure observers of the Election Commission said in the notices that as per their estimates, each of the candidates spent about Rs 7.25 lakh.

The Election Commission has also sought replies from all the candidates on this issue. Copies of the notices were also sent to Chief Electoral Officer Vijay Patidar.

The Election Commission had extended the date of polling from April 24 to May 3 owing to complaints of violation of Model Code of Conduct received from candidates of different political parties. This also led to extension of poll campaign period in Budhni from April 22 as scheduled earlier to May 1.

According to experts, if anyone could prove that more expenses were made by any of the candidates he could register his objection with supporting documents. Accounts submitted by candidates could be obtained through the office of the Returning Officer.