Poll observers to arrive in TN next week

Chennai: Central poll observers would visit Tamil Nadu next week to monitor the election expenses of candidates for the May 16 assembly polls.

“Observers are coming on April 19 or 20 and they will be present in places like Chennai, Tiruchirappalli, Madurai and Coimbatore”, Tamil Nadu Chief Electoral Officer Rajesh Lakhoni told reporters, after releasing the Assembly Elections 2016 – Reference Handbook, here.

“This is for the first time they are being sent by the Election Commission before issuing notification (April 22).

Their main job is to monitor the poll expenses (of candidates)”, he said.

As per the poll schedule, filing of nominations will begin on April 22 and end on April 29.

“If an election campaign is covered in television channel run by a party, it would be incurred by the respective candidates under their poll expenses”.

On the seizure of unaccounted cash of about Rs 23.66 crore, he said so far Rs 16.81 crore were handed over to respective persons after they provided relevant documents for it.

On the appointment of paramilitary forces to Tamil Nadu he said, 275 companies would be arriving here for the polls and the Commission has asked for additional 25 companies.

On the reports of AIADMK candidate and MLA D Jayakumar being charged for violation of model code of conduct, he told PTI that the Commission has taken note of it.

“An FIR has been registered”, he said.

Jayakumar, contesting from Royapuram constituency, was booked for allegedly offering cash when he began the election campaign at a temple last week.