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EC bans SMS by candidates 48 hrs before
Gujarat, HP polls
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, November 16
The Election Commission for the first time imposed a ban on the use of short message service (SMS) by candidates 48 hours before polling for the Himachal Pradesh and Gujarat assemblies.

The move is to check mischievous messages during campaigning.

“The innovativeness of human mind is endless,” Chief Election Commissioner N Gopalaswami told newspersons after a meeting of the Three-member Commission with the Poll Observers here.

The Election Commission, which held a meeting with telecom service providers, said that any mischievous SMS would be tracked in less than 30 minutes and action will be taken against the sender.

The poll panel had two rounds of meeting with telecom service providers before arriving at the unique decision.

Earlier, addressing Election Observers, the CEC asked them maintain strict vigil to pre-empt any malpractice during campaign period and also on polling days.

He also asked them to keep close watch to prevent communal incidents.

There are around 226 observers for Gujarat and 40 for Himachal Pradesh to supervise the elections.

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