The friction between the Punjab government and the Election Commission (EC) intensified on Tuesday after chief election commissioner (CEC) SY Quraishi asked chief minister Parkash Singh Badal not to do anything that could undermine the ongoing election process in the state.
Quraishi also urged Badal to reconsider his stated position on the actions of EC officials in the poll-bound state.
The bone of contention has been the transfer of officials, especially police officials, ahead of the January 30 polls. The cold war became public on Sunday when Badal released a statement criticising EC functioning.
Badal had appealed to the CEC to ask commission officials “to act within the parameters of their constitutional brief”. He had said the manner in which the EC officials were taking decisions was causing confusion about the lines of administrative control.
On Tuesday, the CEC posted a letter addressed to Badal on the EC website, expressing “deep dismay” over his statement.
“I am particularly disappointed that you have chosen to communicate... through the media rather than directly, for which several channels are always available,” the CEC said.