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EC relax Model Code of Conduct


Raipur, April 27, 2009: Succumbing to the pressure from the Chhattisgarh Chief Minister Dr Raman Singh, the Election Commission of India today relaxed the Model Code of Conduct in Chhattisgarh and other states.

With the relaxation, the government can now call for tenders and award that, can conduct review meeting at the state or district level and the Chief Minister or the Ministers can tour the state accompanied by the officials, as per the communication received by the Chief Secretary P Joy Oommen on the issue.

As per the order No 437/6/INST/2009/CC&BE, Secretary to the Election Commission K Ajaya Kumar has informed that the Ministers can now tour the districts and they can be accompanied by the officials, which was previously banned after the model code of conduct was in place.

During the tour, the Ministers can review with the field officials about the on-going programmes in the field, the order said.

The Government can also call review meetings of officers at the district or state headquarters, except for the officers who are on election duty, it added.

The state government and its Departments can call for bids, evaluate and finalise them and even the contracts can be awarded, the Election Commission informed the Chief Secretary.

On April 23, the State Chief Minister Dr Raman Singh had asked the Election Commission to immediately lift of model code of conduct as the model code was hampering the development of the state.

"Since the election in the state has long been over, the model code of conduct should immediately be lifted," the Chief Minister had told the ChhattisgarhTopNews.Com.

Singh had also asked his Chief Secretary P Joy Oommen to be in touch with the Commission on the issue as the state has been facing a drought like situation and there is an acute shortage of drinking water in many areas. Also the works under the employment guarantee scheme have been affected due to a blanket ban on any new work by the Election Commission in the name of model code of conduct.

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