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    Bihar Elections: Black Money, Inducements Worth Over Rs 35 Crore Seized; Exceed 2015 Poll Figures

    Representative image

    Representative image

    The Election Commission (EC) appointed expenditure monitoring teams have seized cash and other illegal inducements like liquor valued at Rs 35.26 crore. In addition, Rs 79.85 lakh Nepalese currency has been seized in the state till now, the data said.

    Cash and suspected illegal inducements for voters such as liquor seized in poll-bound Bihar have been valued at over Rs 35 crore, a figure much more than what was impounded by surveillance teams during the last assembly polls in 2015, according to the latest EC data. The items seized during the last assembly elections in the state were worth Rs 23.81 crore.

    As per data available till Monday, the Election Commission (EC) appointed expenditure monitoring teams have seized cash and other illegal inducements like liquor valued at Rs 35.26 crore. In addition, Rs 79.85 lakh Nepalese currency has been seized in the state till now, the data said.

    Polls for the 243-member Bihar assembly will be held in three phases -- October 28, November 3 and November 7 -- and the counting of votes will be held on November 10. The EC has deployed 67 expenditure observers in the state apart from deputing two high-ranking retired officers of the Income Tax Department who are deployed as special expenditure observers.

    A total of 91 assembly seats have been declared as 'expenditure sensitive' and brought under "focussed monitoring" by the poll panel so that a level playing field is maintained and voters are not bribed. The EC said "881 flying squads and 948 static surveillance teams have been formed for election expenditure monitoring work for the assembly elections of Bihar".

    Distributing cash and gifts during the electoral process is not permitted under the law along with distribution of money, liquor, or any other item disbursed and given to the electors with the intent of influencing them. This expenditure comes under the definition of bribery which is an offence both under the Indian Penal Code (IPC) and the Representation of the People Act, the EC said.


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