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Another jolt for Jogi Govt

Election Commission has asked the Chhattisgarh Chief Minister to remove the Bilaspur district collector immediately for violating the model code of conduct.

india Updated: Nov 20, 2003 11:11 IST

The ruling Congress and the Jogi Administration in the state received another jolt when the Election Commission asked the state government to remove Bilaspur district collector RP Mandal immediately for violating the model code of conduct.

The Bilaspur superintendent of police (SP), SR Kalluri, was already shifted from the district for his alleged hobnobbing with the ruling party. Incidentally, Bilaspur is the home district of Chief Minister Jogi.

According to available information, the SP of Korba, Pawan Diwan, is the next target of EC. The EC has received several complaints against him and a formal decision in this regard is expected any moment.

Earlier, the EC removed the district collectors of Bastar, Jashpur and Sarguja. Of them, collectors of Bastar, LN Surjavanshi and DS Anant of Jashpur, had moved to CAT for a stay. They even refused to hand over the charges despite the High Court order.

The EC took a serious note about it and requested the state Governor, KM Seth to intervene. They were relieved from their respective posts on Tuesday only after the intervention of the Governor.

Sonmani Vora, the Raipur Municipal Commissioner was posted as collector of Sarguja while Jaideep Singh has been appointed as the new SP of Bilaspur in place Kalluri. Kalluri has been shifted to Raipur as SP (CM security). The state government has sent names of panels for the district collectors of Bastar, Sarguja and Bilaspur.

This is probably the first time in the country when six senior district administrators were shunted out for violation of code of conduct.

It was just on Monday that the EC served a six-page notice to Congress president Sonia Gandhi for what it felt was "prima facie gross violation of model code of conduct" for using the state plane and helicopter. These plane and helicopters were alleged misused by the Jogi Government between mid-October and first week of November.

First Published: Nov 19, 2003 23:45 IST