Opposition claim police transfers violate EC code

Opposition parties in West Bengal on Saturday claimed that the recent transfer of senior police officials, including Kolkata police chief R K Pachananda, was violative of the election code of conduct since by-polls were scheduled on February 23 in the state.

A Left Front delegation, led by CPI(M) state secretariat member Robin Deb, submitted a memorandum to Chief Electoral Officer Sunil Gupta. They alleged that the transfer of the senior police officials, following the killing of a police officer here, were in total violation of the EC code of conduct and done without its permission, prior to by-elections in three assembly constituencies.

"We want to know how the Home Secretary signed the paper of transfer without seeking permission from the Election Commission," Deb said after meeting Gupta.

He said though the model code of conduct might not be applicable in the transfer of the police commissioner, the transfer of other top police officers, including ADG(IB), was a violation of the code of conduct.

Gupta could not be reached for comment.

WBPCC chief Pradip Bhattacharya said the Congress too held a similar view.

"Congress feels that there has been a violation of the EC code of conduct by the state government and we will send a memorandum to the Election Commission soon," he said.

BJP leader Tathagata Roy said his party held that the transfers, including that of ADG (Law and Order) Surojit Kar Purakayastha, was not legal so far as EC code of conduct was concerned.

"BJP will welcome a decision to be taken by the Election Commission," he said.

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