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Election Commission to Keep Tabs on Social Media Publicity

The Chief Election Commissioner, Dr. Nasim Zaidi along with the Election Commissioners, Shri A.K. Joti and Shri O.P. Rawat addressing a press conference, at Nirvachan Sadan, in New Delhi on March 04, 2016.

From now on, pasting political publicity material on the Facebook or other social media sites may also invite legal action against the account user.

The Election Commission is keeping a vigil on social media sites and mobile applications to ensure proper implementation of the model code of conduct. Earlier on January 4, a drive was launched to pull down political banners, posters and pamphlets.

In yet another move to ensure foolproof imposition of model code of conduct ahead of state assembly polls, the district election office (DEO) here in a first has constituted a cell to keep a check on the political parties and individuals from posting publicity materials on such sites. “In previous assembly elections, social media sites and mobile applications were not that active, especially in terms of UP. But in this digital era, when every person owns a smart phone and runs facebook, whatsapp and twitter account, it becomes need of the hour to have a body to check these elements,” a senior DEO officer said. This was the second initiative on DEO’s part to ensure compliance of model code of conduct. Prior to this, it had launched a drive to pull down political banners, posters etc after the code of conduct was imposed on January 4. As a part of DEO’s latest initiative, the cell that will functions under the top level officers would keep tabs on social media accounts as well as mobile applications.

“There will be a strict vigil on the social media sites and applications. Balkar Singh, additional CEO has been appointed as a head of this cell,” said T Venkatesh, chief election officer.

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