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Karnataka polls: "Stop transfers of officers", Election Commission tells Siddaramaiah government

By Anusha Ravi
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    No Deputy Commissioners in Karnataka will be transferred until February 28, 2018- the day final electoral roll for Karnataka Assembly Elections 2018 is scheduled to be published. The Election Commission of India has made it clear to the Siddarmaiah government that no officers deputed to the commission- including Deputy Commissioners, roll observers, electoral registration officers and assistant electoral registration officers- can be transferred until the publication of the final roll.

    Siddaramaiah

    Chief Electoral Officer of Karnataka, Sanjiv Kumar in a strongly worded letter to Chief Secretary Rathna Prabha has called it "unfortunate" that the government has refused to withdraw an order transferring DCs involved in election work. "Transfer order issued by the Government on January 22, 2018, cannot be given effect to as far as it relates to the transfer and posting of District Deputy Commissioners. The said transfer orders can be given effect only after the concurrence of the Election Commission," said a letter from CEO Sanjiv Kumar

    The Siddaramaiah government had passed an order transferring DCs including Rohini Dasari of Hassan- H D Devegowda's parliamentary constituency- in violation of the Election Commission rules. H D Devegowda had lambasted the government for untimely transfers accusing it of corruption.

    The letter says that as per the Commission instructions, sent to Karnataka Government on January 17, 2018, para 7 (xi), the transfer of officers who are engaged in electoral roll revision work, if any during any election year shall be implemented only after final publication of the electoral rolls, in consultation with the Chief Electoral Officer concerned. In case of any need for transfer due to any extraordinary reasons, prior approval of the Commission shall be taken.

    The Election Commission has now asked the Siddarmaiah government to stay all transfers mentioned in the January 22 notification. The DCs have been advised not to leave the headquarters or hand over charge till concurrence with the Election Commission.

    Karnataka Assembly Election dates
    Date of notification April 17
    Last date to file nominations April 24
    Last date to withdraw nominations April 27
    Date of polling May 12
    Date of counting May 15

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