| Party flags put up in Agartala on Tuesday |
New Delhi/Agartala, Feb. 5: The Election Commission today found Tripura chief minister Manick Sarkar guilty of using “official infrastructure for political purpose” in violation of the model code of conduct and cautioned him to be more careful in the future.
Sarkar had given an interview to a cable television channel in his official secretariat, where he made political comments in praise of his government and attacked the Opposition.
The commission concluded after an inquiry that it amounted to violation of the model code of conduct.
“The above action on your part amounts to using your official infrastructure for political purpose which is not allowed under the provisions of model code of conduct… The Commission has decided to caution you to be more careful in future,” the EC order said.
The Congress had lodged a complaint before the Commission after the January 15 interview and thereafter the commission held an inquiry and found the charges true.
The decision to caution Sarkar was taken today at a meeting chaired by chief election commissioner V.S. Sampath.
Growing perception of threat of militant violence in the run-up to the Assembly elections and the possibility of political clashes have persuaded the Election Commission to make unprecedented security arrangements for the polls.
From February 7, the highest level of security alert will be sounded all over the state but more stringently along the state’s 856km-long border with Bangladesh.
What has compounded the threat perception is last year’s arrest of surrendered NLFT rebel Dhanu Koloi and two of his accomplices, with Rs 25 lakh, which was supposed to be handed over to NLFT bosses across the border for bulk purchase of arms and ammunition.
Even last month, another NLFT activist, Suramoni Debbarma, was arrested with Rs 7 lakh.
DIG (police) Nepal Chandra Das said out of 260 companies of central paramilitary forces requisitioned by the Election Commission, 251 companies drawn from Punjab police, Gujarat police and the CISF have already arrived and are being deployed across the state to ensure a “free, fair and violence-free election”.