Election Commission takes measures to check Rajya Sabha poll expenditure
There is currently no ceiling on lawful spending in Rajya Sabha and legislative councils polls.india Updated: Sep 06, 2016 00:41 IST
The Election Commission(EC) will put in place a mechanism to check the use of money during elections for Rajya Sabha and legislative councils. There is currently no ceiling on lawful spending in these polls.
The EC has mandated the state election officers to draw up measures in compliance with the existing norms on expenditure during state and general election.
In a directive to all state election commissions, the EC has mentioned that nodal officials in liaison with police and income tax officers can put in place mechanisms for checking “ostentatious displays of money power and bribing of electors”. It has also asked for a 24x7 control room to be set up for notifying rules of the election from the date of notification of polls.
“All complaints, but not restricted to undue influence by offering cash or kind to a voter with a view to getting his or her vote, any type of threats, coercion to voters in the free exercise of franchise, misuse of the state machinery for electoral gains, partisan attitude or unbecoming conduct of connected election or police officer, adversely affecting the fairness of the polls must be received and disposed on a daily-basis,” the EC has said in a communiqué.
This past week, the EC announced that a special violet pen, manufactured by Mysore Lac and paints will be used to mark votes for Rajya Sabha elections. The pen will be provided by the election official to the voters instead of being left tied inside the voting booths.
This comes in the wake of recent transgressions such as cash-for-votes and using the wrong ink to mark votes during polls for the Upper House of Parliament.
In June this year, the EC decided against countermanding polls in wake of sting operations showing MLAs accepting money to vote in Karnataka for the biennial elections, but a CBI probe was ordered.
A report on the use of wrong ink during election to the Upper House in Haryana is still being examined by the EC.