Election commission transfers all officials involved in RK Nagar bypoll
To ensure a free and fair election amid the factional feud in the AIADMK, the commission deputed five additional observers in the constituency.india Updated: Apr 02, 2017 00:09 IST
The Election Commission (EC) on Saturday transferred nearly all the officials involved in the poll management of the RK Nagar assembly constituency in Tamil Nadu, which fell vacant after the death of sitting chief minister J Jayalalithaa.
In a rare measure, the poll body ordered the transfer of all officers holding the rank of assistant returning officers and below in the revenue side. It has also transferred all officers of the rank of additional commissioner of police and up to the inspector of police.
Among those transferred also include assistant and executive engineers of municipal corporation.
To ensure a free and fair election in the high-profile constituency amid the factional feud in the AIADMK, the commission deputed five additional observers in the constituency.
“It has been decided to deploy micro-observers to move in small lanes of the constituency on motor bikes and assist the observers of the commission, deploy cameras in streets to monitor movement, map all incoming roads, put check posts, deploy additional teams of flying squads, which will now be 10 in number and work 24x7 in three shifts,” said the panel in a press release.
“The flying squads will be GPS enabled and manned by the staff from central government departments,” the release added.
Radhakrishna Nagar, an AIADMK fortress since 2001, will witness factional rivalry for the first time. The party had retained the seat even when the rival DMK swept the rest of Tamil Nadu. Jayalalithaa won a by-election from here with a margin of 1.5 lakh votes in 2015.
While a victory for the Sasikala faction would help her consolidate the grip over both party and government, O Panneerselvam group wants to win it to wrest claim on Jaya’s legacy. Sasikala’s nephew TTV Dinanakaran is facing party veteran E Madhusudhanan in the bypoll.
After receiving complaints from both sides, the EC sent a delegation of senior officers to review the poll preparedness.
After its report, the EC has decided to cover all the polling stations with central forces on poll day. It will also have web-casting in all booths services of IAS/IPS probationers from the state will also be pressed into service.
“A number of officers of the level of tehsildars/deputy collectors having the knowledge of Tamil language will be requisioned from neighbouring state of AP and Kerala to strengthen flying squads,” said the release.