ECI directs AP to initiate stern action against those involved in violence

Vijayawada: In a major development linked to post-poll disturbances in AP, the Election Commission has directed Chief Secretary K.S. Jawahar Reddy and DGP Harish Gupta to initiate stern action against those involved in violence.

In fresh steps on Thursday, the EC ordered suspension of two SPs and transfer of a district collector and a SP.

The EC, led by Chief Election Commissioner Rajiv Kumar and election commissioners Gyanesh Kumar and Sukhbir Singh Sandhu, held a meeting with the state CS and DGP in New Delhi. The EC expressed its concern over the post-poll violence in AP and directed the CS and DGP to ensure that such violence is not repeated.

The EC laid stress on ensuring that all SPs are tasked to take pre-emptive measures to avoid such violence in future.

The EC reviewed the poll-related cases in AP and directed the top state brass to ensure strict supervision and appropriate decisions on timely filing of chargesheet against the accused persons, in compliance with the relevant sections in the law.

Both the CS and DGP briefed the EC on their assessment of negligence and lack of supervision on the part of officials in the violence-affected districts. Accordingly, the EC approved the state government's proposal to take action on some officials.

Following this, the Palnadu district collector and Tirupati SP were transferred. The Palnadu SP and Anantapur SP were suspended and a departmental inquiry would be initiated against them.

Twelve subordinate police officers from Palnadu, Anantapur and Tirupati were also suspended.

A special police team would be formed to investigate the matter and submit an action-taken report to the EC in two days in each of the cases. FIRs would be updated by adding additional IPC sections and relevant statutory provisions.

Based on AP’s request, the EC decided to direct the Union home ministry to retain 25 CAPF companies in AP for 15 days after completion of counting of votes, on June 4, to check chances of violence after declaration of the poll results.

Earlier, the EC summoned the CS and DGP to appear before it on Thursday to explain the reasons for the administrative or police failure to avert post-poll violence.

AP had witnessed several incidents of violence in Anantapur, Palnadu and Tirupati during the polling day and there was post-poll violence in Annamayya, Chittor and Palnadu districts besides Guntur, Anantapur and Nandyal districts.

( Source : Deccan Chronicle )
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