Instead of giving cash politicians and their supporters are offering mobile SIM cards, recharge vouchers or simply transferring talktime over the air to the voters.
The SIM card and recharge method is favoured by women folk because when cash is given, the men spend it on liquor and non-veg food. But mobile talktime is safe and non-lethal.
Yesterday, the Adugodi police in Bangalore arrested four persons for campaigning in favour of a candidate and indulging in free distribution of SIM cards. The police have also seized 4,000 pamphlets promising SIM cards to electorate.
Meanwhile, liquor, the age old inducement across regions, is still in high spirits in Karnataka.
In just two weeks, the Election Commission has seized 46,000 litres of liquor worth Rs three crore.
Like liquor, the cash is flowing into the states in crores. Yesterday's crackdown netted a cash of Rs 6.15 lakh in Davanagere, Rs 4.63 lakh in Madhugiri, Rs 2.62 lakh in Yellapur and Rs 1.3 lakh in Belaguam. with this the total cash seized since announcement of elections has touched Rs 11 crore.
Already 286 FIRs have been filed so far in connection with violation of the poll code and poll-related offences, while there are still 10 days to go for the voting.
Liquor ban for polls
Meanwhile, all liquor shops, wine shops, bars, hotels, restaurants, taverns, and other public or private places in Bangalore city will remain closed from 5pm on May 2 to midnight of May 5, and from 6am on May 8 till midnight of May 8.
Elections to the 224-member Karnataka legislative assembly are being held on May 5 and the counting of votes will be taken up on May 8.