Chandigarh: In a bid to conduct fair and peaceful Assembly elections in Punjab next year, the Election Commission decided to take stringent steps to stop the flow of illegal money, enhance the security cover and carry vigorous monitoring in the different parts of the states.

The EC has appointed 22 IG rank officials along with 59 IAS officials and deployed several companies of Central Security Forces to observe the activities in different constituencies and ensure clean elections in the state.

Besides this, the EC has also appointed 43 IRS officials and several senior rank officials from different departments who will keep a tab on the expenditure of political parties during the elections.

Chief Election Commissioner SY Qureshi said, “Use of unaccounted money and corruption are threat to elections. We are entitled to conduct peaceful and transparent elections. Therefore, all possible efforts will be made to curb these menaces.”

The CEC further said, “We have got strong evidences of drugs being used on a large scale by the political parties to woo voters. Such actions will not be tolerated. We will take assistance from Narcotics Control Bureau in this regard.”

Permissions in written will be required for carrying election rallies. The Commission has introduced single window system in this regard to facilitate the process.