3 candidates ‘fail’ to publicise criminal record

All the three candidates with criminal background contesting the elections in the North Goa district have not publicized their criminal records during electioneering and till the day before the polls, inviting action for contempt of court, said a senior official at North Goa District Collectorate.
Six out of the 28 candidates contesting the elections in the state have criminal cases pending against them.
In North Goa district, Sanjay Barde (NCP), and Shekhar Naik (AAP) contesting the Mapusa by-polls have criminal cases for offences relating to bouncing of cheques, and road rage while the Lok Sabha candidate Aishwaraya Salgaoncar (Ind) contesting North Goa Lok Sabha seat have pending cases for rioting and unlawful assembly.
The official said they would soon issue show cause notices for code violation to such candidates for not publicising in the manner prescribed, which is a ground for post-election action like election petition or contempt of Supreme Court.
The official further said that however, they are waiting for a compliance report which is required to be submitted after the election by the candidates about publicising criminal antecedents in newspapers and TV channels as per the directions of the Election Commission along with copies of newspapers in which declaration was published to the District Election Officer (DEO) and the political parties to the chief electoral officer (CEO) of the state.
Following a Supreme Court direction, the Election Commission of India had on October, 2018 made it compulsory for candidates contesting polls to advertise their criminal antecedents on TV channels and popular newspapers in vernacular language or in English during the period starting from the day following the last date for withdrawal of candidature and up to two days for at least three times before the date of poll.
It said the candidates and their parties would have to bear the cost of advertisements and it would form part of their election expenditure.
As per direction of the Supreme Court, the declaration is required to be published in newspapers with wide circulation in the area concerned. The CEO should share the indicative list of various newspapers which have wide circulation in the various district/different constituency areas in the state prepared by the state DIP with the political parties and the candidates.
The names of the leading newspapers which are popular were shared with the political parties and the candidates but none of the six candidates with criminal background contesting the Lok Sabha and byelections or their political parties have published their criminal records in any media since the beginning till the day before the polls.

Source:: The Navhind Times

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