KOLKATA: There has been a sevenfold increase in monetary seizures has been recorded in the five states heading for their assembly elections, according to the Election Commission of India.
A cumulative amount of Rs 1760 crore has reportedly been seized from Mizoram, Madhya Pradesh, Chhattisgarh, Rajasthan and Telangana since the elections were announced.
Earlier, according to the ECI, the seizures made in the previous assembly elections in these states were Rs 239.15 crore in 2018. This has been denoted as a seven fold increase in the seized amount.
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“It may be recalled that seizures over Rs 1400 crore were done in the past six state assembly elections held in Gujarat, HP, Nagaland, Meghalaya, Tripura and Karnataka which is 11 times of the previous assembly elections in these states,” the ECI further denotes.
Of the total Rs 373 crore cash seized from the five states, Telangana has recorded the highest at Rs 225 crore and precious metal running close to Rs 191.02 crore. On the other hand, MP recorded the highest liquor seizures amounting to Rs 69.85 crore.
Poll-bound Rajasthan which is to go for elections alongside Telangana on November 25, had the highest number of freebies seized amounting to Rs 341 crore. Both the states are also leading concerning the amount of drugs recovered during the course of the elections. The state of Telangana leads with Rs 103 crore while Rajasthan follows a close second at Rs 91 crore.
Mizoram, Chattisgarh and MP have recorded an amount of Rs 29.82 crore, Rs 4.55 crore and Rs 15.53 crore.
The ECI had said during their review in these states, emphasised on zero tolerance of influencing voters through multi-level actions by enforcement agencies, which according to the commission’s observation is reflected in the increased seizures in the states.