Over 3,000 Bengal hamlets vulnerable: Poll panel

Last Updated: Sat, Mar 22, 2014 15:30 hrs

Kolkata, March 22 (IANS) The Election Commission has identified over 3,000 "vulnerable" hamlets in the 42 parliamentary constituencies in West Bengal, an official said Saturday.

Chief Electoral Officer Sunil Gupta said vulnerability mapping across the state was being carried out with the commission designating 3,614 hamlets as vulnerable.

"In these vulnerable hamlets, we have identified 2,994 troublemongers who are capable of fomenting trouble through threats or intimidation. Out of these, preventive action has been initiated against 1,760.

"Figures encompassing the state, put the numbers at 9,698 cases in which preventive action has been taken. A total of 20,396 are under the bind-down provision of the Code of Criminal Procedure (CrPC)," Gupta told reporters here.

In case of non-bailable warrants (NBWs), 16,811 have been executed. Pending NBWs stand at 42,376.

A staggering 59,302 cases have been recorded for defacement of public property. In 44,260 of such cases, graffiti has been removed.

"Notice was issued in 15,042 cases, out of which 188 cases have been initiated in police stations while FIR has been registered in 24," he said.

Regarding defacement of private property, 4,830 cases have been recorded, out of which graffiti was removed in 946 cases. A total of 48 cases have been lodged in police stations and FIR has been filed in 12, he said.

Gupta said the commission was receiving a "huge number" of complaints over violation of the model code of conduct from various sources including political parties and election officials.

The commission has received 72 complaints from parties since the announcement of the election schedule March 5.

"In 18 (cases), action has been completed while in 55 investigation is going on. Out of the 18 cases received through election officials, action has been taken in six while the rest are under the scanner," he said.

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