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2024 Lok Sabha polls: Election Commission orders removal of Home Secretaries in 6 states, West Bengal DGP also removed to ensure free and fair elections

The commission has directed all the State Governments to transfer the officers connected with election-related work, who have completed three years or are in their home districts.

In a decisive move towards upholding the principles of free, fair and transparent elections, the Election Commission of India (ECI) has issued orders for the removal of Home Secretaries in six states namely Gujarat, Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, Jharkhand, Himachal Pradesh and Uttarakhand.

Additionally, the Secretary of the General Administrative Department in Mizoram and Himachal Pradesh have also been removed.

The commission has directed all the State Governments to transfer the officers connected with election-related work, who have completed three years or are in their home districts.

Maharashtra had not complied with the directions in respect of few Municipal Commissioners and some Additional / Deputy Municipal Commissioners in Maharashtra.

While conveying displeasure to the Chief Secretary, the Commission directed transfer of BMC and the additional / Deputy commissioners with the direction to report by 6pm today.

The Chief Secretary was further directed to transfer all the similarly placed Municipal commissioners and Additional / Deputy Municipal Commissioners of other Corporations in Maharashtra.

This step comes as part of the Commission’s resolve and commitment to maintaining a level playing field and ensuring the integrity of the electoral process, which has been emphasised by CEC Rajiv Kumar time and again and recently during the Press Conference for announcement of Schedule for General Elections 2024.

The Commission meeting chaired by Shri Rajiv Kumar, comprising of Election Commissioners Shri Gyanesh Kumar and Shri Sukhbir Singh Sandhu was held on Monday at noon.

The officials who have been removed in these seven states were found to be holding dual charges in the office of Chief Minister in respective states which may potentially compromise or be seen to be compromising the impartiality and neutrality required during the electoral process, especially in matters relating to law and order, deployment of forces, etc.

Furthermore, the Election Commission has also taken the necessary action to remove the Director General of Police (DGP) of West Bengal. This decision was taken due to DGP being removed from any active election management related duty earlier, during 2016 Assembly Election in the state and in 2019 Lok Sabha Elections.

With this step, the Election Commission of India has shown its commitment to conducting free, fair, and transparent elections.

Through these measures, the Commission ensures that all stakeholders uphold the highest standards of integrity and impartiality, thereby safeguarding the level playing field in the entire electoral process. (ANI)

(This news report is published from a syndicated feed. Except for the headline, the content has not been written or edited by OpIndia staff)

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ANI (Asian News International) is South Asia's leading Multimedia News Agency.

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