One more collection centre for Kashmiri migrants at Chandigarh
Run-up to Assembly polls
Chief Electoral Officer, Jammu & Kashmir, Umang Narula Thursday said six cases of paid news were reported in the State during the Lok Sabha polls held earlier this year.
Narula, who was interacting with journalists at a media workshop organized here by the Election Commission of India, said menace of paid news would be checked properly in accordance with the poll-body’s guidelines during the forthcoming Assembly polls.
“At district level, there are committees which look into the malpractice. Whenever these committees suspect that there is paid news in the garb of news coverage, they intimate the Returning Officer, who issues notice to candidates for inclusion of actual expenditure on the published matter in his/ her election expenses,” he said.
The poll body last week decided to go ahead with Assembly polls in the flood-devastated state. The five phase Assembly polls would see polling on November 25, December 2, 9, 14 and 20.
Deputy Chief Electoral Officer, Rashpal Singh, said appropriate action was taken in paid news cases reported during the LS polls in the state.
“All these cases were reported from Jammu,” he added.
Replying to queries from media persons, the CEO said the Commission would take proper action against candidates who would indulge in hate speeches during electioneering.
“We have made proper arrangements for video-graphing the speeches of political leaders during electioneering,” he said, adding “Whenever there is a complaint against any candidate or leader of a political party, we will examine his/ her speech.”
The CEO also revealed that for the first time, a separate form collection centre has been set up for the convenience of Kashmiri migrant voters at Chandigarh.
“We have made the arrangement following a representation in this regard,” he said.
He said there were already facilities for collecting forms at Jammu, Delhi and Udhampur. Pertinently, Kashmiri migrants are required to submit Form-M to exercise their franchise during polls.
Narula said the Election Commission of India has raised the cap on the expenditure of a candidate from Rs 5 lakh to Rs 28 lakh for Assembly polls in the State.