The Election Commission on Friday ordered the “immediate” transfer of 15 civil administration and police officials, including a DM and an SP to “further tighten” the law and order machinery in West Bengal ahead of the 4th and 5th phase of Assembly polls.
The Commission said that it has ordered the transfer of P B Salim, District Magistrate of South 24-Parganas and SP of North 24-Parganas Tanmay Ray Chaudhuri with “immediate effect”.
The Commission also ordered shunting out of six ‘officers incharge’ -- one each in South 24 Parganas and Hoogly and 2 each in North 24 Parganas and Cooch Behar districts.
It also removed seven inspectors incharge - 1 each in South 24 Parganas and Howrah and 5 in North 24 Parganas districts.
The poll watchdog said the transfers have been ordered “in order to further tighten the law and order machinery for 4th and 5th phase of polling in West Bengal.”
Earlier, the Election Commission of India (ECI) on Friday had removed the District Magistrate of South 24-Parganas and the Police Superintendent of North 24-Parganas from election duty.
The ECI has directed the Chief Secretary of the state to replace the two officers from election duty.
Annappa E will be the new police super of North 24-Parganas in place of Tanmay Roy Choudhury whereas Abanindra Singh will replace PB Selim as the District Magistrate of South-24 Parganas.
According to the office of the Chief Electoral Office in the state the Commission has asked the Chief Secretary to make the replacements within 7 pm on Friday.
It may be mentioned that after the notification of the Assembly election in West Bengal, the Commission has removed two District Magistrates so far from Hooghly and South 24-Paraganas while six SPs have also been removed from poll duty. They were from South Dinajpur, Nadia, Malda, Burdwan, Birbhum and North-24 Parganas. Two District election officers of Kolkata North and Kolkata South have also been removed from the poll duty as per the order of the Commission. Several SDOs and SDPOs were also transferred as the Commission had found a lack of neutrality among the officers.
Senior officials of the ECI have held a meeting with the CEO office and other election officials in the state through a video conference to take a stock of the poll preparedness ahead of phase IV elections scheduled to take place in North 24-Parganas and Howrah on April 25.