Election Commission of India on Tuesday appointed K K Sharma, IPS 1982 Retd DG Border Security Force, as Special Central Police Observer for the States of West Bengal and Jharkhand.
He would oversee the deployment and other security-related issues in the said States during the Lok Sabha 2019 elections.
The Special Observers will be supervising and monitoring the work being done by the electoral machinery and ensure that stringent and effective enforcement action is undertaken based on intelligence inputs and complaints received through C-VIGIL and Voter Helpline 1950 against all persons/entities trying to induce voters by distributing cash, liquor & freebies etc. in order to vitiate the poll process.
Meanwhile, the Election Commission (EC) is set to increase the number of 'special expenditure observers' to monitor illegal cash and inducements being given to voters during the Lok Sabha polls as it has identified about 120 expenditure sensitive constituencies till now in the country, officials said Monday.
The poll body, last week, appointed two retired Indian Revenue Service (Income Tax) officers as special expenditure observers for Maharashtra and Tamil Nadu. This is the first time that such observers have been appointed for any polls in the country.
They said few more such observers could be appointed by the next week to oversee the work of about 800 central expenditure monitoring teams and observers who track black money, liquor, drugs and other freebies given to voters illegally.
Officials said the Election Commission, till now, has identified about 120 expenditure sensitive constituencies in the country for general elections and it is awaiting the report of some state Chief Electoral Officers (CEOs) to identify more such segments.
The identified expenditure sensitive constituencies are in the states of Telangana, Andhra Pradesh, Tamil Nadu, Haryana, Gujarat, Bihar, Jharkhand and Uttarakhand, among others, while a similar report from states like Maharashtra and few others are awaited.
The seven-phase election will begin on April 11 and conclude on May 19.
(With PTI inputs)