M A I N   N E W S

EC shifts Kapurthala Returning Officer
Saurabh Malik
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, September 27
Taking serious note of allegations against Returning Officer (RO) for the Kapurthala byelections Dilraj Singh Sandhawalia, the Election Commission of India (ECI) today ordered his shifting.

Giving details, sources in the office of Punjab’s Chief Electoral Officer G.S. Cheema revealed that the RO was directed to be shifted out of the district with immediate effect. The orders, they added, had been complied with. Mr Cheema could not be contacted.

In a related development, the Punjab Police officials today revealed that 54 sensitive polling stations had been identified in the two assemblies of Kapurthala and Garshankar. The byelections are scheduled to be held there on October 13.

The sources in the election office, meanwhile, revealed that a panel of officers was forwarded to the ECI this afternoon following orders regarding RO’s shifting. Orders pertaining to fresh appointments were likely to be issued by the ECI on Tuesday, the sources added.

They claimed that reason behind the issuance of shifting orders had not been specified by the ECI. But protests by Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD) president Parkash Singh Badal and his supporters could have contributed to it.

Badal and his supporters had, earlier during the day, demanded the transfer of Kapurthala’s Deputy Commissioner (DC) Rakesh Kumar Verma, along with Senior Superintendent of Punjab Police (SSP) S K Asthana, besides the RO.

Regarding the identification of sensitive polling booths in the two Assemblies, senior Punjab Police officers revealed that there were 23 such stations in Kapurthala. As far as Garhshankar was concerned, there were 31 sensitive polling stations.

In all there were 233 stations in the two Assemblies, including 116 in Kapurthala. So far as voters were concerned, 79.88 per cent had voter identity cards in Garshankar. The percentage was a little less in Kapurthala. As many as 69.28 per cent electors possessed identity cards.

The total number of voters in Kapurthala was 1,21,420, including 62,774 men and 58,646 women. In Garshankar the number of voters was 1,19,133, including 61,749 men and 57,384 women.

HOME PAGE | Punjab | Haryana | Jammu & Kashmir | Himachal Pradesh | Regional Briefs | Nation | Opinions |
| Business | Sports | World | Mailbag | Chandigarh | Ludhiana | Delhi |
| Calendar | Weather | Archive | Subscribe | Suggestion | E-mail |