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Election expenditure of candidates submited for Golaghat and Khumtai LAC

Election expenditure incurred by contesting candidates of the recently concluded Assam Assembly Election from Golaghat and Khumtai Legislative Assembly Constituencies has submitted their accounts for inspection before the District Election Officer (DEO), Golaghat on 12th and 13th June. However the Elections Department did not go merely by the accounts submitted by candidates in assessing their election expenditure. The shadow register maintained by the District Election Officer has noted down the election expenditure of each candidates. The candidates at the same time have to maintain their own expenditure register. The election expenditure accounts were scrutinized from 15th June to 17th June in the presence of H.S. Meena and Pooja Raz, the Chief Expenditure Observer for Golaghat and Khumtai LAC respectively. After scrutinizing their accounts the DEO detected certain anomalies in accounts submitted by the candidates and the record maintained by the DEO. For instance, Ajanta Neog, Cong (i) candidate for Golaghat LAC has submitted her election expenditure as Rs. 8,45,840/- but the DEO remarked that another under stated amount of Rs.3,97,437/- is to be added to her total expenditure. Similarly Amiya Kr Bora, AGP candidate for Golaghat LAC showed his election expenditure amounting to Rs. 5,52,959/- but the shadow register maintained by the DEO detected that another Rs.1,77,768/- is to be added to his total expenditure. On the other hand Debeswar Bora, TMC candidate for Golaghat LAC who has spent nearly Rs. 15 Lakhs on his election campaign have to face disaster in the poll outcome. Bora’s hope of leaving a mark in the political arena of the state was dashed to the ground and he was out rightly rejected by the public.

From the books of accounts submitted by candidates, with a total spending of Rs. 15, 06,706/- Prabin Kr. Rajkhowa, independent candidate from Khumtai LAC emerged as the candidate spending highest amount of money in the election campaign whereas with a total expenditure of Rs. 56,440/- only Satyadev Sahu another independent candidate from Khumtai LAC, turned out to be the candidate spending the lowest amount in election campaign. Election expenditure of some of the prominent candidates are as follows Bismita Gogoi, Cong(I) candidate from Khumtai LAC, Rs. 10,46,556/-, Upashana Gogoi, AGP candidate from Khumtai LAC, Rs. 3,98,152/-, Mridul Kr Dutta, BJP candidate from Khumtai LAC, Rs. 5,06,942/- and Diganta Saikia, TMC candidate from Khumtai LAC, Rs.13,79,075/-

However Amrit Ballav Goswami of NCP, who has contested for Golaghat LAC did not submitted his books of accounts and show cause notice has been issued to him for not submitting the expenditure report. It is pertinent to mention here that a contesting candidate who fails to lodge the account of election expenses within the time and the manner required by law and has no good reason or justification for the failure will entail disqualification under section 10A of the Representation of the People Act, 1951 for standing as a candidate at any election to either House of Parliament or State Legislature, and for continuing as a member of any such House if he is already a sitting member of any such House, for a period of three years from the date of the order of the Commission declaring him so disqualified.

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