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Officials briefed about election duties, guidelines

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Groundwork: Collector J. Umamaheswari addressing officials at meeting in Karur.
Groundwork: Collector J. Umamaheswari addressing officials at meeting in Karur.

Staff Reporter

KARUR: All government officials in Karur district should fully understand the election related duties and guidelines and adhere to them in letter and spirit as the model code of conduct has come into effect with the announcement of the schedule for Lok Sabha elections, said Collector J. Umamaheswari.

Ministers should not be allowed to review development of welfare schemes. Till the elections were over the model code of conduct would remain in place, she told officials at an election related meeting for officials held here on Monday.

She said that as per the Election Commission directives, no candidate or political party should indulge in any activity directly or indirectly attracting or alluring the voters by announcing or allotting funds and grants, laying foundation stones or declaring open schemes.

Even if the budget had allotted funds for particular welfare schemes, their implementation should be suspended until after the elections were over, she added. Announcements and promise of laying roads and providing water supply should be avoided during the period when the model code was in vogue, the Collector said. However, if a scheme has already been completed and the public essentially required the benefit of the scheme then the work could be commenced only with the officials in a government function without the presence of any politician. Importantly even if public were to thank the ruling party for the benefit, that should not be allowed, she pointed out.

As far as development activities were concerned, even if orders had been issued, fieldwork should wait till the election gets over, the Collector said. But, those works for which sanctions had been given could proceed. Beneficiaries chosen ahead of promulgation of code of conduct could get their benefits and patients getting assistance from the Prime Minister’s Relief Fund and Chief Minister’s Relief Fund could get them remitted directly to the hospital. The Collector warned political party or candidate found indulging in any sort of violation of severe action as per the rules and urged officials detecting such irregularities to immediately bring them to her notice.

District Revenue Officer C. Munirathinam, Project Officer of District Rural Development Agency, S. Namagiri, District Adi Dravida Welfare Officer Manivannan and Special Deputy Tahsildar (Elections) Uttaman were present.

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