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Conducting clean elections a challenge due to abuse of money power, says CEC

Conducting clean elections a challenge due to abuse of money power, says CEC

New Delhi: Holding free and fair elections is one of the biggest challenges facing the Indian democracy due to prevalent "abuse" of money power, Chief Election Commissioner Sunil Arora said Friday.

Addressing a meeting of the Multi-Departmental Committee on Election Intelligence here, Arora also said the poll panel is determined to curb the menace and it has issued detailed guidelines to monitor election expenditure incurred by candidates and political parties. "The expenditure monitoring mechanism has got stronger over a period of time and larger seizures have been made by our enforcement teams in successive elections," a statement issued by the poll panel quoted Arora as saying.

Heads of tax boards, law enforcement agencies, central paramilitary forces and representatives of financial institutions attended the meeting.

"Conducting clean elections is now one of the biggest challenges in our democracy given the prevalent abuse of money power, particularly when it manifests in inducement of voters," he was quoted as saying. Election Commissioner Ashok Lavasa said implementation of instructions of the poll panel requires coordination among various expenditure monitoring teams.

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