Chief Electoral Officer of Punjab V K Singh today said that civil and police administrations of Patiala and Bathinda districts have been directed to ensure that all political workers leave the constituencies after the campaign period.

He said that under section 126 of the Representation of People's Act, 1951, after the closure of campaign period, no campaign can take place within the constituency.

Political workers, who have been brought from outside the constituency and who are not voters of the constituency, should not remain there as their continued presence may undermine the atmosphere, he said.

However, the restrictions would not apply to elected MP or elected MLAs of the constituencies, even if he/she is not an elector from there, Singh said, adding, such MP/MLA would not be allowed to canvass after the campaign period.

The election and police administrations have also been directed to check community halls where such people are housed and find out whether the outsiders have been accommodated in these premises.

Authorities have also been asked to verify lodges and guesthouses to keep track of occupants, to set up check-posts in the constituencies' borders and track vehicular movement to the constituency, and to verify the identity of people in order to find out whether they are voters or not.

The by-polls were necessitated after Amarinder Singh, Congress MLA from Patiala (urban) got elected to Lok Sabha from Amritsar and sitting Congress legislator from Talwandi Sabo Jeet Mohinder Singh deserted the party to join the ruling.

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