Naresh Gupta reviews poll work with Collectors

Staff Reporter

EPIC process to continue even after April 15, if needed

Names deleted "by mistake" from the final list can be included againEC seeks report from Chennai Corporation Commissioner on alleged code violation by Minister D. Jayakumar

MADURAI: The Election Commission will give voters, whose names were found in the draft list but deleted "by mistake" from the final list, an opportunity to include their names, Chief Electoral Officer Naresh Gupta said here on Thursday.

After reviewing poll-related works with Collectors of 10 districts, Mr. Gupta said such left-out persons should give fresh applications for inclusion. Similar meetings with Collectors from each region would be conducted at Coimbatore on Saturday and in Chennai on Monday.

The meeting discussed preparatory works on printing of electoral rolls, progress made in issuing elector's photo identity card (EPIC), methodology to be adopted to complete the work, preparation of database of polling officers and ways and means to implement the model code of conduct.

Stating that the Election Commission had revised its programme on EPIC photographing, Mr. Gupta said the programme would continue even beyond April 15, if necessary, against the present deadline of March 31.

The EC had sought a report from Chennai Corporation Commissioner on the alleged violation of model code of conduct by Minister D. Jayakumar.

Mr. Gupta clarified that there was no legal ban on publishing opinion polls. When his attention was drawn to parties trying to woo members of self-help groups by distributing loan applications, the CEO said there was no blanket restriction on giving fresh loans by banks. However, the EC would keep a tab on distribution of subsidy-linked loans.

Mr. Gupta directed the Collectors to write to Tamil Nadu State Transport Corporation officials not to allow State-run buses to be misused by political parties by way of pasting posters.

On removal of hoardings put up by the parties in public places, Mr. Gupta said the officials need not wait till the deadline of March 18 but start the removal work and complete it gradually.