Ahmedabad Mirror | 1 month ago | 01-12-2022 | 06:00 am
As the state votes for phase-1 of the polls on Thursday, the state police are on high alert. However, for some reason three high ranking IPS officials, one each in Saurashtra, Bharuch and Kutch, have been rushed at the last moment. While police said that these officers have been posted for overseeing law and order, a whopping number of security personnel – about 1,230 for each of the 89 constituencies – have already been posted there for the first phase.Top officials said that they have deployed about 109,500 personnel and officials in Saurashtra, Kutch and South Gujarat to ensure smooth and peaceful elections. Quick Reaction Teams (QRT), mobile police patrolling, ancillary parties such the Sector Mobiles have also been deployed in the poll-bound areas. “Apart from 32,000 strong police force in the two cities of Surat and Rajkot and about 20 districts the will see voting for phase -1 on Thursday, 42,000 jawans of Central Armed Police Force (CAPF), 500 jawans of State Reserve Police Force (SRPF) and 35,000 Home Guard jawans have been deployed for poll duty.Meanwhile, top police sources said that IGP (ATS) Amitkumar Vishwakarma has been sent to Saurashtra, IGP Subhas Trivedi is camping in Bharuch and IGP G L Singhal has been deployed in Kutch region. Several high ranking state IB officials also have been dispatched to different places where the elections are scheduled for Thursday.Meanwhile, to ensure that liquor is not sold or distributed in the state during the election period, Gujarat police have registered about 34,000 cases under the Prohibition Act, and seized over Rs 20 crore worth of liquor. Some 3.27 lakh persons, seen as potential threats to peaceful conduct of elections, have been detained under the precautionary Act. Under the NDPS Act, 1,477 kg drugs worth over Rs 61.95 crore have been seized.Live webcast from 13,065 booths in 1st phaseLive webcast of more than 50% polling stations in the state will be done to keep a close eye on the voting process in the first phase of polling on December 1. In the first phase, 19 districts in Kutch, Saurashtra and South Gujarat region will see voting on Thursday. Live webcast of the operations at 13,065 polling stations will be done. As per the instructions of the Election Commission of India (ECI), voting will be held in 25,430 polling stations in the first phase, of which 13,065 will be webcasted live. A state-level monitoring room has been set up by the office of Chief Electoral Officer (CEO) at Vidya Samiksha Centre in Sector-19 in Gandhinagar from where all 13,065 polling stations will be closely monitored. As many as 42 staff/officers in the monitoring room will continuously monitor the polling webcast from the time voting begins at 8.00 am.
IPS officer Anupam Singh Gahlaut (Additional DGP, State Intelligence Bureau) and DSP KK Patel of ATS have been awarded the President’s Police Medal (PPM) for distinguished service. The other IPS officers who received the meritorious service medals included Additional DGP (State Intelligence Bureau) Anupam Singh Gahlaut, Gautam Parmar (Range IGP, Bhavnagar), Parixita Rathod (DIG, CID crime) and Yuvrajsinh Rathod (Addl DGP Intelligence, Gujarat).Meanwhile, Narasimha Komar, Addl DG of Police (Law & Order), Gujarat State received the Special Award for Excellence in Security Management. He was the State Police Nodal Officer (SPNO) for the recently held Gujarat Assembly Elections, 2022. The Election Commission of India recognised his leadership in excellent planning, multi-agency coordination and strong security arrangements that ensured a peaceful election.The other police officers who received the Meritorious Service Medal are ACP Bhavesh Roziya of Surat City Crime Branch, JD Vaghela (armed DSP of SRP Group-4), PD Vaghela ( armed DSP of SRP group-7), ASI Kiritsinh Rajput, among others.
With more than a month to go for the Kasba Assembly bypoll in Maharashtra, all eyes are on the BJP, which is yet to announce its candidate. The bypoll was necessitated due to the demise of sitting BJP legislator Mukta Tilak. While a few local BJP leaders have demanded that the party field a member of the Tilak family to enable an unopposed election as a tribute to Mukta Tilak, a former Pune mayor, other aspirants are waiting in the wings.After Tilak succumbed to cancer last month, BJP leader Ujjwal Keskar publicly made a statement urging the party to consider her husband Shailesh or son Kunal as their candidate for the bypoll scheduled on February 27.“The Kasba bypoll should be unopposed as a tribute to Mukta Tilak and the party should support a member of the Tilak family. Thus, a request has been made to BJP leaders to provide a ticket to a Tilak family member,” said Keskar.According to BJP sources, while the party is yet to take a decision, the Tilak family is not averse to contesting the election if a family member gets a party ticket.However, as the Tilak family members lack political experience, this has raised hopes among other aspirants, including Ganesh Bidkar, Hemant Rasane and Dheeraj Ghate. The name of Medha Kulkarni, former BJP legislator from Kothrud Assembly seat, is also making the rounds. She was asked to refrain from contesting elections to make way for then state BJP chief Chandrakant Patil to contest from the Kothrud seat, which was considered to safe seat for BJP. Kulkarni had registered her protest but was later pacified and made vice-president of the national unit of the BJP women’s wing.From the Opposition, Congress leader Arvind Shinde, the city unit chief who lost to Mukta Tilak in 2019, said he has already conveyed to the party that the local unit was ready to contest the seat. The Congress also has another aspirant, Ravindra Dhangekar, who contested the seat as a Maharashtra Navnirman Sena (MNS) candidate in 2014 and lost to Girish Bapat.Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) leader Rupali Patil Thombare, who recently switched sides from MNS, has also expressed her wish to contest the Kasba bypoll if her party permits. Thombare had pointed out that the BJP has been fielding candidates in bypolls for seats that were vacated due to the demise of other politicians. However, she was pulled up for going public with her wish to contest.Local Shiv Sena (UBT) leaders have also conveyed their readiness to contest the Kasba bypoll.The Opposition Maha Vikas Aghadi (MVA) alliance is likely to come up with a strategy for the bypoll elections. They are presently contesting state Legislative Council seats as an alliance.
As per the annual reports of political parties released by the Election Commission (EC) Tuesday, the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) has shown total receipts of Rs 1,917.12 crore and expenditure of Rs 854.46 crore in Financial Year 2021-’22. It received contributions through electoral bonds to the tune of Rs 1,033.7 crore.The Congress in its annual audit report for Financial Year 2021-22 has shown its expenditure at Rs 400.41 crore and receipts of Rs 541.27 crore. It has shown grants, donations and contributions to the tune of Rs 347.99 crore.The 2019 to 2020 financial year, which saw the previous Lok Sabha polls, saw the highest income and spending by parties over the last five years. In this period, the BJP’s income touched Rs 3,623.28 crore, as per the Election Commission reports. That year, it declared its expenditure as Rs 1,651.02 crore. The Congress also saw its income go up to Rs 682.2 crore, while its expenditure was Rs 998.15 crore.Analysis of data over the last five years shows that there has been a fluctuation in the incomes and expenditures of the two parties. Besides the poll year, the BJP’s income in the year 2017-’18 was relatively high at Rs 1027.3 crore. The following financial year, 2018-’2019, it was the lowest at Rs 241 crore.A look at how the two parties income and expenditure fared in the previous years:BJP Income over the yearsCongress income over the years
AHMEDABAD: Frequent fights among members of a family that migrated from Sindh to Ahmedabad have taken the form of an Indo-Pak war, with one set of relatives accusing the others of being Pakistani nationals. While his complaint to the Election Commission led to the cancellation of the elector photo identity cards (EPIC) of his two cousin brothers, the duo has now approached the Gujarat high court seeking redressal.Justice Biren Vaishnav has sought a reply from Gujarat's chief electoral officer (CEO) on the cancellation of the voter ID cards and posted further hearing on February 7.Murli (48) and Anil Parpiyani (44), residents of Kubernagar, approached the high court after their uncle and his son alleged they were not Indian citizens and had obtained voter IDs fraudulently, leading to its cancellation.The Parpiyanis' advocate N L Ramnani said Murli and Anil had come from Sindh with their parents - Wadhumal and his wife - in the 1980s. They were minors then. Their parents later obtained Indian citizenship, but the two brothers did not bother to ascertain theirs.Wadhumal's cousin Koromal had also come to India with him. Koromal and his family diligently pursued the procedure to obtain citizenship, and he and his son, Dinesh, became Indian citizens.Meanwhile, serious disputes over finances and other issues cropped up between the two families, who have filed several police complaints against each other over the years.Dinesh raised the issue of Murli and Anil’s citizenship and complained to the authorities that the brothers had fraudulently obtained voter ID cards and Indian passports.“Murli and Anil had applied for Indian citizenship, but the authorities stalled theprocess after they received complaints that the two had procured voter ID cards despite being Pakistani citizens.The electoral registration officer cancelled the EPICs.Since the complaint about nationality was also made before the passport authority, the brothers received a show cause notice,” said their lawyer.The brothers’ passports were impounded on the ground that they were obtained based on forged documents.The two approached the HC in 2021, challenging the actions taken against them. When the hearing on the petition took place on Monday, advocate Ramnani submitted that the election officials had held a camp in Kubernagar and issued voter ID cards to all residents without proof of citizenship. Thus, no forgery was committed to get the Indian passports.The lawyer further told the court the petition had been pending in the high court for two years.The authorities have not decided on their application for Indian citizenship by citing the pendency of the petition. Moreover, the brothers have lived in the country formore than seven years, married Indian citizens, and are entitled to Indian citizenship.When the brothers filed a petition in the HC, Dinesh filed an application to join the litigation to oppose their prayers on the ground that Murli and Anil were a threat to his family.However, his insistence on presenting the case himself as a party-in-person led the high court to reject his application in July 2022.The HC has posted further hearing on February 7, and the chief electoral officer has been ordered to respond about the cancellation of EPICs by then.
The coming elections in the Northeastern states of Tripura, Nagaland, and Meghalaya will see the BJP fighting to keep hold of the gains it made in the region in 2018. While the BJP is in power in Tripura, it is a part of the ruling coalitions with the National Democratic Progressive Party (NDPP) in Nagaland and with the National People’s Party (NPP) in Meghalaya.The term of the three assemblies, which have 60 members each, is set to end in March. Tripura will vote on February 16 and Meghalaya and Nagaland on February 27. Votes will be counted on March 2.A look at how the previous elections panned out and what is at stake now:The Nationalist Democratic People’s Party (NDPP) and the BJP contested the elections together. While the BJP won an unprecedented 12 seats, the NDPP’s Neiphiu Rio became the Chief Minister.This year, the state will again see an election in the shadow of the long-awaited final settlement to the Naga political question. It was in hope of this that all parties here joined hands in 2021 to form the UDA.The Naga People’s Front (NPF), which once ruled the state, has announced that it will be contesting the election alone and against the NDPP-BJP coalition. Like in 2018, both parties have announced a pre-poll alliance, with the BJP set to contest 20 seats and the NDPP the remaining 40.NPF – 26 (38.78%)NDPP – 17 (25.30%)BJP – 12 (15.31%)Independents – 1 (4.28%)JD(U) –1 (4.49%)There are fissures between the BJP and the National People’s Party (NPP) led by Chief Minister Conrad Sangma. In the 2018 election, Sangma’s party was backed by the BJP and the regional parties but contested 53 of the 60 seats on its own. The impression that the BJP is anti-Christian has been hard to shrug off, with misgivings of the community further strengthened after the surfacing of a letter by the Assam Police Special Branch seeking information from local police stations in BJP-ruled Assam on religious conversions and the number of churches in the state.The most vocal Opposition party against the BJP in the state is the Trinamool Congress (TMC), a new entrant in Meghalaya. In November 2021, 12 of 17 sitting Congress MLAs, led by former Chief Minister and six-time MLA Mukul Sangma, switched over to it. Mukul Sangma, a popular leader, can help the party, especially in his home turf of Garo Hills, which sends as many as 24 MLAs to the 60-member Assembly.BJP – 2 (9.63%)Congress – 21 (28.50%)Hill State People’s Democratic Party (HSPDP) – 2 (5.35%)NPP – 19 (20.6%)United Democratic Party – 6 (11.61%)Khun Hyniewtrap National Awakening Movement – 1 (0.9%)The BJP came to power in the state for the first time in 2018, ending a 25-year reign of the Left Front. On May 14, 2022, in an abrupt change, the BJP dropped Biplab Deb and brought in the relatively low-key Manik Saha as CM. The Congress and CPI(M) are trying to put up a fight together, and there is increasing talk of an alliance between the two, while the tribal TIPRA Motha party, formed in 2021, may take away tribal votes of BJP’s ally IPFT. TIPRA Motha may end up being a decisive factor in the elections.BJP – 35 (43.59%)CPI(M) – 16 (42.22%)IPFT – 8 (7.38%)