Election officials remove graffiti on public walls

Election officials on Saturday began a drive to remove graffiti of political parties on public walls in Tiruchi and other parts of the district.

While the portraits of Chief Minister Edappadi K. Palaniswami and former Chief Minister Jayalalithaa were removed from the Collector Office, Corporation Office and other offices of the State government, the officials removed the portraits of political leaders and paintings on Amma canteens. The officials tasked with the removal of graffiti visited various parts of the city and erased paintings of the AIADMK and the DMK.

Collector cum District Election Officer S. Sivarasu, who presided over an all-party meeting here on Saturday, said that political parties had been instructed to remove flag posts in public places within two days. Otherwise, the officials would remove them and the expenditure for removing the posts would be collected and added to the expenditure of the political parties.

He said that no candidate or political party would be allowed to campaign between 10 p.m. and 6 a.m. It was mandatory to get permission for writing wall paintings and banners on private walls. Political parties should desist from campaigning at religious places. The parties and candidates should get permission online for public meetings. It should not disrupt the traffic movement and the normal life of the people.

Mr. Sivarasu said that the Election Commission had instructed to take stern action against those distributing cash or kind to voters. Flying squads and static surveillance teams had begun monitoring movement of vehicles transporting cash and materials. There was no ban to carry cash up to ₹50,000. Valid documents were required to carry cash above the limit or other materials. Otherwise, the election officials would seize them.

He said that instances of COVID-19 cases were on the rise in Maharashtra and Kerala. It was noted that there had been a slight increase in COVID-19 in Tamil Nadu. Hence, political parties, candidates and voters should exercise maximum vigil. Eligible persons should get the vaccination.

M. Anbazhagan (DMK), V. Jawahar (Congress), Boopathy (AIADMK) and leaders of various parties participated in the all-party meet.

Earlier, Mr. Sivarasu held a meeting with Commissioner of Police Loganathan and Returning Officers and Assistant Returning Offices of nine Assembly constituencies in the district.

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