Lok Sabha Election 2019

Candidates should list criminal cases against them: Kerala CEO Teeka Ram Meena

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Kerala’s Chief Electoral Officer Teeka Ram Meena on Wednesday said candidates for the 2019 Lok Sabha Elections should mandatorily file an affidavit elaborating the details of criminal cases, if any, against them along with their nomination papers.

They should also publish the details of the cases at least three times in prominent newspapers and visual media outlets during the period between the date of nomination and the poll date, he said and added that they should submit the documentary evidence to the concerned returning officer. The cost of the advertisement would be counted as the candidate's election expense.

Mr. Meena described the move as a new drive to clean up politics initiated by the Supreme Court, and some political parties could feel discomfort.

He said the apex court had introduced the electoral reform process to stop the criminalisation of politics. The Election Commission of India also wanted to bring purity and transparency into the electoral process and empower the electorate to make informed choices, he said.

The public could bring any violation in the filing and publishing of criminal case details of candidates to the notice of the concerned returning officer with evidence, he added.

Mr. Meena also announced that the ECI would strictly implement the green protocol. It would remove and not allow any campaign material, including hoardings and posters, flags and festoons, fashioned out bio non-degradable and environmentally polluting elements. However, there was no ban on paper, cloth or other environment-friendly campaign posters.

He also announced a toll-free number, 1950, for the electorate to file their complaints, including issues relating to voter's list. The cell monitoring the complaints would inform the petitioners via text message what action has been taken on their petitions.

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Printable version | Jan 18, 2020 2:24:10 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/elections/lok-sabha-2019/candidates-should-list-criminal-cases-against-them-kerala-ceo-teeka-ram-meena/article26521532.ece

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