EC partially relaxes order on Punjab minister Majithia’s movement

Chandigarh : The Election Commission (EC) Tuesday partially relaxed the ban imposed on the movement of Punjab minister Bikram Singh Majithia in Amritsar parliamentary constituency.

The EC, which had Monday ordered that Majithia would not be allowed to move anywhere in the Amritsar parliamentary constituency except for his polling station, has reconsidered its order, Punjab chief electoral officer V.K. Singh said Tuesday.

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As per the latest EC order, the minister can move around in his assembly segment of Majitha. However, the restriction on his movement in all other assembly segments of the Amritsar seat remains.

Singh told media here: “We have received a communication from EC that his movements would continue to be kept under surveillance and videographed as per yesterday’s instructions. The restriction as well as relaxation has been done at the level of EC (in New Delhi).”

The poll panel’s ban on Majithia’s movements beyond his own polling station had created some political tension on the eve of Wednesday’s election.

The ban on Majithia’s movements has been strongly opposed by the ruling Akali Dal which labelled it “unprecedented, unwarranted and undemocratic” and sought its immediate withdrawal.

Majithia was the main campaign manager for BJP candidate Arun Jaitley for the Amritsar seat. He is the brother-in-law of Punjab Deputy Chief Minister and Akali Dal president Sukhbir Singh Badal and heads the party’s youth wing.

The opposition Congress and its Amritsar candidate Amarinder Singh had complained to the EC that Majithia was allegedly intimidating voters.

All 13 Lok Sabha seats in Punjab go to polls Wednesday. Over 1.95 crore voters will decide the fate of 253 candidates.