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Tuesday, Oct 22, 2019

May ban liquor sale in Punjab, Haryana 2 days before poll: CEC

Arora indicated that EC could order ban on liquor sale not only in Haryana but also in Punjab for two days ahead of the polling day.

assembly-elections Updated: Oct 11, 2019 04:29 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Hindustan Times, Chandigarh/New Delhi
Chief Election Commissioner, Sunil Arora said EC will also separately call director general (DG) of Narcotics Control Bureau to discuss the issue of drugs during electioneering in Haryana.
Chief Election Commissioner, Sunil Arora said EC will also separately call director general (DG) of Narcotics Control Bureau to discuss the issue of drugs during electioneering in Haryana.(PTI)
         

Chief election commissioner (CEC) Sunil Arora on Thursday underlined the need for “better coordination” between excise and taxation departments of Haryana and Punjab to tackle the problem of liquor smuggling in the run-up to October 21 Haryana assembly elections.

Addressing a press conference after winding up the two-day visit of the full EC panel here to review the preparations for the upcoming Haryana assembly elections, Arora said political parties have requested the EC to make adequate arrangements to ensure that no liquor is distributed one or two days prior to the voting.

Arora indicated that EC could order ban on liquor sale not only in Haryana but also in Punjab for two days ahead of the polling day.

He said the EC will also separately call director general (DG) of Narcotics Control Bureau to discuss the issue of drugs during electioneering in Haryana.

The CEC said the panel will take strong action if any candidate is found seeking votes in the name of caste or during religious functions.

Directing the officers and the officials involved in election to be fearless, objective and neutral, Arora said “very harsh action” will be taken against the officers or officials who will not be found impartial and neutral.

Stating that an effective mechanism has been put in place for free and fair conduct of the electoral process, Arora said the commission has directed the officials concerned to make fool-proof arrangements in sensitive and vulnerable areas of the state.

The CEC said the web-casting from all hypersensitive polling booths will be done during the polling.

According to the EC, political parties sought deployment of adequate number of paramilitary forces during election in areas having maximum number of people belonging to economical weaker sections.

A few political parties also requested for installation of CCTV cameras on the sensitive polling stations.

“The Commission is committed for free, fair, peaceful, transparent, ethical and inclusive elections. Effective mechanism is being set up for smooth conduct of the electoral process,” Arora said.

Earlier in the day, the EC team inaugurated the state-level exhibition organised under the ‘Systematic Voter Education and Electoral Participation Programme’ (SVEEP) and released the SVEEP action plan book.

The CEC also launched audio jingles and TV campaigns. During its two-day visit, the commission held a series of review meetings with a host of state officers, including chief electoral officer Anurag Aggarwal, chief secretary Keshani Anand Arora and DGP Manoj Yadava. The commission also met nodal officers of income tax, excise and taxation departments.

First Published: Oct 11, 2019 04:28 IST

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