Setting new precedent for civic polls, the election commission (EC) has appointed Income Tax (I-T) officials to monitor expenses of the candidates contesting Thane and Ulhasnagar civic elections. The EC has appointed six officials for Thane Municipal Corporation (TMC) and five for Ulhasnagar Municipal Corporation (UMC).
I-T officials have been appointed for assembly and Lok Sabha polls, but never for civic polls, until now.
J S Saharia, state election commissioner (SEC), said, “These I-T officials will be given specific seats to keep a tab on the election expenditure of the candidates. The detailed report of the same will be submitted to the EC for further action.”
Moreover, municipal commissioners of Thane and Ulhasnagr would be given the authority to chose the seat or the candidate on whom the I-T official will keep a tab.
“We have our observers, who keep an eye on election expenditure of all the candidates. These I-T officials will only be asked to keep a tab on sensitive seats, where the commissioner feels undue funds are being splurged for campaigning or to lure the voters,” Saharia added.
Each candidate is permitted total election expenditure of Rs. 4 lakhs in Thane and Rs. 3 lakhs in Ulhasnagar. They are supposed to give an account of per day expenses and total expenditure to the election commission.