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EC seizes cash, drugs, alcohol worth Rs 240 crore in poll-bound states

Material worth Rs 99.99 crore has been seized from Punjab alone, including drugs worth Rs 75 crore.

By: Express News Service | New Delhi |
Updated: January 28, 2022 10:24:07 pm
The State Election Commission (SEC) has delinked the exercise of publishing the draft ward boundaries and announcing seat reservations together.. (File)

The Election Commission of India has seized cash, drugs and other freebies worth Rs 240 crore in the five Assembly election-bound states of Uttar Pradesh, Uttarakhand, Punjab, Manipur and Goa. Material worth Rs 99.99 crore has been seized from Punjab alone, including drugs worth Rs 75 crore.

Officials said the EC held meetings on Friday regarding expenditure monitoring with the chairpersons of the Central Board of Direct Taxes and the Central Board of Indirect Taxes and Customs.

According to the EC’s records, until Friday, drugs worth Rs 170.73 crore were seized from the five election-bound states. Rs 38.42 crore in cash, and liquor worth Rs 27.51 crore were also seized.

Rs 67.75 crore of the total amount seized came from Manipur, Rs 61.39 crore came from Uttar Pradesh, Rs 8.13 crore came from Uttarakhand and Rs 3.66 crore came from Goa.

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“Sensing the menace of drugs and its possible use in wooing voters, the commission also convened a meeting with DG (director general) of Narcotics Control Bureau… Most of the seizures have been of drugs/narcotics…,” an official said.

“Another meeting on curbing the possible inflow of liquor from the state of Haryana to poll-bound states… was convened with the chief secretary, the director general of police and the principal secretary (excise and taxation) participating. The commission directed them to ensure strict vigil and check at state borders so that no illegal movement of liquor (and other substances) to poll-bound states takes place,” the official added.

The EC is deploying 228 expenditure observers across the five states.

“After due assessment, 63 Assembly constituencies in these states have been marked as expenditure sensitive constituencies for more focused vigil,” the official said.

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