"We know that money in election becomes the biggest source of corruption. Though the expense limit is up to Rs 16 lakh (for candidates contesting Assembly polls), crores of rupees are spent," Chief Election Commissioner S Y Quraishi said addressing a press conference here.
When a candidate spends crores of rupees in election, he will have a tendency to recover the same from the very first day he gets elected, the CEC observed.
"This is how corruption begins and which is why we are working to strike at its root. In the upcoming polls, we have deployed teams which include officials from the police, paramilitary, Income Tax and other departments to strictly monitor illegal movement of cash (which is used) to woo the voters," Quraishi said.
He said the EC would keep a strict eye on voters being lured by parties by doling out cash and gifts.
A six-member EC team led by Quraishi was on a two-day visit to Chandigarh which began yesterday. It took stock of poll arrangements in the state and met representatives of various political parties here. The polls to the 117-member Punjab Assembly are scheduled to be held on January 30.
The CEC said that Rs 73 crore of unaccounted money, including Rs 3.5 crore from Punjab, has been seized so far from the five states going to polls.