Over Rs 100 crore in cash, 17.06 lakh litres of liquor worth Rs 32.03 crore and more than 4,800 kg narcotics valued at Rs 21 crore have been seized by the Election Commission-appointed surveillance and expenditure monitoring teams in the five poll-bound states. As per official data compiled since the announcement of polls early this month till today, Uttar Pradesh has witnessed the maximum seizure of cash at Rs 90.98 crore followed by Rs 7.08 crore in Punjab, Rs 1.27 crore in Goa, Rs 1.23 crore in Uttarakhand and Rs 8.13 lakh in Manipur.
In other illegal inducements suspected to be used to lure voters in these states, a whopping 17.06 lakh litres of liquor worth Rs 32.03 crore has been seized by the Election Commission-appointed police and state excise teams in these states. In UP, these seizures were recorded at 9.67 lakh litres worth Rs 24.89 crore, followed by over 6.55 lakh litres of spirits worth Rs 5.06 crore in Punjab, over 5,000 litres liquor worth Rs 1.31 crore in Uttarakhand, 72,000 litres worth Rs 85.14 lakh in Goa and beer and other hard spirits worth Rs 19.07 lakh in Manipur.
Drug seizures by the anti-narcotics agencies and police teams have been seen maximum in Punjab as the total haul has been recorded at 4,875 kg valued at Rs 21.47 crore. Punjab accounted for 2,640 kgs worth Rs 13.76 crore, followed by 2,103 kg worth Rs 5.06 crore in UP, over Rs two crore in Manipur, 6.85 kgs of the same consignment worth Rs 34.22 lakh in Goa and about Rs 29.85 lakh worth contraband in Uttarakhand. The total volume of drug seizures includes heroin, poppy husk, charas, Ganja and smack among others.
Officials said a total of “Rs 100.65 crore in cash, about 17.06 lakh litres of liquor worth Rs 32.03 crore and an estimated Rs 21.47 crore worth narcotics have been seized in the five poll-bound states of Uttar Pradesh, Punjab, Goa, Uttarakhand and Manipur”. Also, gold and silver worth Rs 49.22 crore have been seized by these teams from the poll-bound states with the maximum being recovered from Punjab at Rs 26.04 crore, they said.
The EC has appointed about 200 election expenditure observers apart from other central observers to keep a check on black money and illegal inducements used to bribe voters. The Assembly elections in these five states will be held between February 4 and March 8. Counting of votes for all states will take place on March 11.