That the political parties woo the voters with liquor, money and other inducements in the ongoing panchayat elections is known. But several political leaders in this district have gone a step ahead and are encouraging the villagers to brew illicit liquor for their (the villagers’) own use and for distribution to others. They are also storing huge quantities of liquor for future use.
Meanwhile, the election process going on in full swing, the political leaders are carrying on their ‘business of bribing the voters’ with the police check-posts failing to curb the smuggling of money, liquor and other things which are used in this business.In several villages in the district, the major political parties are trying to establish their hold on the panchayats by extending support to the candidates with winning chances.
The panchayat elections have turned into a prestige issue in several panchayats and in some panchayats the political parties have declared common candidates.
Over 2,029 sarpanch candidates remain in the fray after withdrawals. Of the total 883 panchayats going to polls, there have been unanimous elections in 135 panchayats.
There 15,531 candidates still in the fray for the ward member posts. Of the total 9,446 wards going to polls, there have been unanimous elections in 2,582 wards.
The district police have identified 259 hypersensitive villages and 275 sensitive villages in the district. The police seized Rs 40 lakh from various places across the district, according to Special Branch CI M Venkataramana said.
Deputy Commissioner of Excise P Premprasad said that they had installed special check-posts , including five check-posts on the State’s Karanataka border, to prevent the smuggling of illicit liquor from the neighboring state.