EC deploys 36 observers for polls in 3 NE states



New Delhi: The Election Commission has deployed 36 observers for monitoring the flow of illegal cash and other inducements during the upcoming assembly polls in Meghalaya, Nagaland and Tripura.

The officials have been deputed by the Central Board of Direct Taxes (Income Tax department) and Central Board of Excise and Customs (Customs and Excise department) and will act as Election Expenditure Observers (EEOs), a senior Revenue department official said.

While 13 expenditure observers each will be sent to Nagaland and Meghalaya, 10 will go to Tripura.

The observers, according to officials, will monitor all the EC guidelines framed to curb the use of money power in the run-up to the polls.

The EC has also asked the I-T department to activate its air intelligence units in these states to check the movement of cash via the air route.

The observers have also been asked to keep a tab on hawala agents, advertisements related to political candidates in the media and the sale of liquor in these states.

The EC has also called for a meeting of representatives of all political parties of these states on January 18, they said.

Assembly elections in Tripura will be held on February 14 and in Meghalaya and Nagaland on February 23.

The counting of votes will be done on February 28. In a separate communication, the EC has asked BSF to mount additional vigil along the borders with Bangladesh and Myanmar.

PTI