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EC seized cash, liquor worth Rs 3450 cr during LS poll

May 20, 2019 14:42 IST

This is thrice of what agencies seized during the 2014 Lok Sabha poll process, reports Archis Mohan.

Image used for representational purposes only.

After the completion of the seventh and final phase of polling on Sunday, the Election Commission said cash, drugs, liquor and precious metals worth Rs 3,449.12 crore were seized by enforcement agencies since the Lok Sabha polls were announced on March 10.

This is thrice of what agencies seized during the 2014 Lok Sabha poll process.

 

In 2014, law enforcement agencies made seizures worth Rs 1,206 crore, the EC’s director general (election expenditure) Dilip Sharma said.

Law enforcement agencies between March 10 and May 19 seized Rs 839.03 crore in cash, liquor worth Rs 294.41 crore, drugs worth Rs 1,270.37 crore, precious metals, including gold, worth Rs 986.76 crore and “freebies”, including saris, wrist watches, aimed at inducing voters worth Rs 58.56 crore were seized.

EC officials said they directed social media platforms, including Facebook, Twitter and WhatsApp, to remove several that were found to violate the EC’s code.

They said social media platforms removed 909 posts.

Facebook removed 650 posts, Twitter took down 220 posts, ShareChat removed 31, YouTube five and WhatsApp three.

Of the 650 posts taken down by Facebook, 482 were political messages posted during the “silence period”.

The “silence period” starts 48 hours before the hour set for conclusion of polling in a particular phase.

The seventh phase of polling came to a close at 6 pm on Sunday, so the “silence period” had begun at 6 pm on Friday for this phase.

As many as 73 social media posts were political advertisements in the “silence period”, two were in violation of the model code of conduct, 43 were related to voter “misinformation”, 28 were dubbed as those crossing the limits of decency, 11 were related to exit polls and 11 were hate speeches, Ojha said.

There were also 647 confirmed cases of paid news, of which the maximum of 342 were reported in the first phase itself, he added.

During the 2014 Lok Sabha polls, 1,297 confirmed cases of paid news were reported, Ojha said.

Archis Mohan in New Delhi
Source: source
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