Executive officer (in-charge) of Sendarapatty Town Panchayat in Salem district claimed on Monday that an advertisement in a Tamil daily on October 27, listing the achievements of the local body, was released without his knowledge. “I am the signing authority of this local body. But nobody got my consent orally or in writing for publishing the advertisement”, P. Elavarasan told The Hindu.

Opposition parties in Salem protested on Sunday by pointing out that the advertisement was in violation of the model code of conduct that was in force in view of the by-election to the Yercaud Assembly seat on December 4.

Stating that he was aware of the model code that prohibited local bodies from releasing advertisements, he said chairman of the town panchayat Malini Ramesh was too annoyed with the incident. “The figures mentioned in the advertisement are also wrong,” Mr. Elavarasan said adding that that he had given an explanation to the District Collector.

“The District Administration is conducting a probe into the incident. It is not clear yet as to who released the advertisement”, Collector and District Electoral Officer (DEO) K. Maharabushanam said.

The Collector said directions were awaited from Chief Electoral Officer (CEO) Praveen Kumar on the report sent to him on the advertisement. Police said they were yet to register a First Information Report as no complaint had been lodged so far.

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