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EC Cracks Down on Violence in Andhra Pradesh Elections

In a strong response to the violence during the Andhra Pradesh elections, the Election Commission of India (ECI) has suspended the Superintendents of Police (SPs) of Palnadu and Anantapur. The decision followed a detailed briefing from DGP Harish Gupta and Chief Secretary Jawahar Reddy. The ECI also transferred the Palnadu District Collector and Tirupati SP, ordering departmental actions against them. Additionally, 12 subordinate police officers from these districts have been suspended and face departmental inquiries.

The ECI noted that the elections on May 13 saw significant clashes in Palnadu, Tirupati, and Anantapur districts, which the authorities failed to control effectively. Following a meeting with the Chief Secretary and DGP on Thursday, the three ECI commissioners expressed deep dissatisfaction with the handling of the violent incidents. They issued clear directives to prevent future violence and warned of stricter actions if such incidents recur.

To investigate the matter thoroughly, the ECI has set up a special investigation team, instructing them to submit action-taken reports within two days for each case. The ECI also directed that FIRs be filed under IPC sections and that the Ministry of Home Affairs continue the deployment of 25 CAPF companies in Andhra Pradesh for 15 days post-results to maintain law and order.

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