Assembly polls: Gujarat transfers over 900 officials after EC rap

New Delhi: The Gujarat administration has transferred over 900 officials ahead of assembly polls after being pulled up by the Election Commission, but 51 more, including six senior IPS officers are yet to be moved out, sources said on Wednesday.

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Now, the poll panel has asked the state chief secretary to ensure that the remaining officers report to “respective headquarters” and a compliance report sent by 4.00 PM Thursday, the sources said.

Of the 51 officers yet to be transferred are six IPS officers — additional commissioners of police Premvir Sinh (crime, Ahmedabad city) and A G Chauhan (traffic, Ahmedabad city), and deputy commissioners of police Harshad Patel (Control Room, Ahmedabad city), Mukesh Patel (Zone-IV, Ahmedabad city), Bhakti Thakar (Traffic, Ahmedabad city), and Rupal Solanki (Crime, Surat city).

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The over 900 officers transferred are of various grades and services, the sources pointed out.

Taking a stern view of the failure of Gujarat government officials to send a compliance report on transfer and posting of officials ahead of the assembly polls, the EC had last week sought an explanation from the state chief secretary and DGP.

Citing a letter, the EC shot off to the Gujarat chief secretary last Friday. Sources said despite reminders the chief secretary and the director general of police failed to send compliance reports on transfer and posting of certain category of officials.

They were asked to explain the circumstances as to why the compliance reports were not furnished “so far even after the lapse of stipulated time limit despite issuing of the reminder in the matter”, a source said quoting the letter.

The letters regarding transfer and posting of officials were sent to Himachal Pradesh and Gujarat.

While Himachal Pradesh will go to polls on November 12, dates are yet to be announced for Gujarat election.

The Commission had directed the two state governments to transfer officials posted in their home districts and those who have spent three years in a district in the last four years.

It is usual for the poll panel to issue such directions ahead of Lok Sabha and assembly polls to ensure free and fair elections.

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