Election Commission officials seize Rs 4 lakh from Congress worker

Election Commission officials today seized more than Rs four lakh in cash from a Congress worker in Meghalaya's South West Khasi Hills district, a day before Rahul Gandhi's scheduled visit for campaigning.

The huge cache of cash was recovered from worker, V Bansal, by flying squads from Jakrem village, located in between the capital and the district headquarters of Mawkyrwat, officials said.

"An amount of Rs 4.5 lakh was seized from the worker identified as Bansal," the South West Khasi hills district Deputy Commissioner and District Election Officer (DEO) told PTI.

While Rs four lakh was frozen after the seizure, Rs 50,000 was handed over to Bansal, in line with the guidelines of the EC. The District Election Officer has also directed the Congress worker to submit all papers to justify his claim that the cash was spent to meet tomorrow's rally expenditure.

On Sunday night, police had seized Rs 13 lakh from a relative of one of the candidates, but the person's association with any of the political parties is yet to be verified.

"The verification process is on. Any action is yet to be taken against him even as an FIR was lodged against him for violation of ECI directives with regards to carrying cash,"]m West Khasi Hills district election officer W Kharlyngdoh said.

A district police chief and an extra assistant commissioner was transferred and suspended in keeping with the free and fair conduct of February 23 elections in the state, mofficial sources said.

North Garo hills police chief Aditya Goenka was replaced by Dr N Rajamarthandan even as the state election department suspended Mairang sub-division Extra Assistant Commissioner (EAC) H M L Kynta for alleged dereliction of duty, Chief Election Officer P Naik said.

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