Election Commission sets up panel to probe Karnataka poll date leak

EC referred to a tweet by BJP IT cell chief Amit Malviya in which he had put out the election date minutes before CEC O P Rawat actually announced the schedule at a press conference.

Published: 27th March 2018 06:48 PM  |   Last Updated: 27th March 2018 08:57 PM   |  A+A-

Chief Election Commissioner CEC O P Rawat with Election Commissioners Ashok Lavasa and Sunil Arora announces the schedule for Karnataka elections at a press conference in New Delhi on Tuesday, 27 March 2018. | PTI

By PTI

NEW DELHI: The Election Commission this evening set up a committee of senior officials to probe the leak of the poll schedule for Karnataka before it was announced by the Chief Election Commissioner earlier today.

The committee, which has been asked to submit its report within a week, would also suggest steps needed to prevent any such eventuality in future.

In a statement, the poll watchdog referred to a tweet by BJP IT cell chief Amit Malviya in which he had put out the election date minutes before CEC O P Rawat actually announced the schedule at a press conference.

Malviya tweeted that polls would be held on May 12 and counting will take place on May 18.

READ: BJP accepts tweeting Karnataka election date was wrong

While he was correct about the date of polling, he got the counting date wrong which will actually take place on May 15.

"The Commission immediately directed that the matter be probed and necessary and effective action be taken. Accordingly, Commission has constituted a committee of senior officers of Election Commission to investigate the matter and give its report within seven days.

ALSO READ: Election Commission must reply how BJP got to know about Karnataka poll date, says CPI

"The Committee would also suggest steps needed to prevent any such eventuality in future. The Committee set up by the Commission has already sought information from the concerned media organisations and individuals," the statement read.

It said Malviya, in another tweet, had attributed a news channel as his source.

ALSO READ : Oops! Amit Shah says 'Yeddyurappa the most corrupt CM'; Siddaramaiah says BJP president is correct

In his press conference to announce the poll schedule, Rawat had described the leak as a "very serious" issue that merited a probe and "stringent action".

ALSO READ: Karnataka polls: Survey predicts 126 seats for Congress; Opposition calls it biased

He said people can conjecture but noted that as information has been "leaked", the Election Commission will probe the matter and take "stringent action" both "legally and administratively".

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