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EC gives clean chit to observer in CPI(M) office raids case

Written by: Staff
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New Delhi, Apr 7 (UNI) Dismissing the CPI (M)'s complaints on the raid of its zonal party office in Paschim Midnapore district of West Bengal, the Election Commission today said that its observer had acted ''correctly'' and ''committed no fault.'' Citing the report of the two-member team it had sent to probe the matter, the EC, in a statement here, said it was ''pained to note that the facts of the case have been distorted and unfounded allegations levelled against the Observer, who performed his duty in rright earnest.'' The EC also clarified that the raids on Jamshed Bhawan, the zonal office of the left party at Keshpur, had not been carried by central paramilitary force personnel, deployed there, on the directions of the Observer, Manmohan Singh, but by the district police.

It said the Observer had passed on the complaint of the Trinamool Congress candidate, relating to alleged hoarding of illegal arms at Keshupur, to the police and the consequent raids were carried out by four teams, headed by district officials, which had been constituted by the district Police Superintendent.

The EC stressed that the Observer had rightly forwarded the complaint to the administration and as the complainant had not specifoied the exact locations of the sites of the purported arms cache, he was unaware of the places to be raided. It also refuted a media report, quoting the District Magistrate as having said that the Observer had ordered the raids, noting that the official had denied making any such comment to the particular newspaper.

The raid had sparked of strong condemnation by the Left Front, and the EC had constituted a two-member team, comprising Deputy Election Commissioners R Balakrishnan and Anand Kumar, to inquire into the matter and submit its report.

UNI VD PA RS2113

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