EC full bench to visit Karnataka on April 29

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Bangalore, Apr 25 (UNI) A full team of Election Commission led by Chief Election Commissioner M N Gopalaswamy will visit Karnataka on April 29 to take stock of the poll preparedness for next month's elections to the state Assembly to be held in three phases.

Addressing newspersons Karnataka Chief Electoral Officer M N Vidayashankar said the team would again hold meetings with representatives of political parties, poll observers and Deputy Commissioners and SPs of all districts.

He said two Deputy Chief Election Commissioners R Bhattacharya and Jayaprakash had completed their visits of all the districts and would appraise the team about the readiness of the state machinery to conduct free and fair elections.

The EC had convened a meeting with DGP (Poll) Sree Kumar today and discussed the deployment of central forces for the first phase of elections to be held for 89 assembly seats in 11 districts.

Referring to new methods of seeking votes by the political parties through SMS, MMS and voice mail, Mr Vidhyashankar said the EC would approach the telecom service operators and take the details of expenses incurred and apportion it to concerned nominees' election expenses account.

Replying to questions, he said that as many as 550 cases had been filed against various individuals and leaders of political parties for violating election code of conduct since the announcement of elections.

He said EC had permitted voters to have 16 documents to confirm their identities besides the ECs photo identity cards. This included employment certificate, ration card and passports, he said.

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