The Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike (BBMP) Commissioner Manjunath Prasad, was abruptly transferred on Thursday after an order passed by the Election Commission of India (ECI).
According to EC officials, Manjunath Prasad, who was the District Electoral Officer, was transferred after a complaint filed by the BJP state unit to ECI.
According to a press note from the Department of Personnel and Administrative Reforms (DPAR), Manjunath Prasad will be immediately replaced by M Maheshwar Rao, who was the Agriculture Secretary.
On Wednesday, the BJP had written a letter to ECI in New Delhi, claiming there were delays in responding to small requests of BJP candidates and party workers across the state.
The BJP had particularly mentioned Manjunath Prasad for undue delay in granting permission to put up hoardings.
“The BJP had said in its letter that when the party members asked for permission to put up hoardings in April, Manjunath Prasad had refused to grant it under several pretexts,” an official with the EC said.
However, Manjunath Prasad confirmed to TNM that he was transferred because he had not given permission to put up hoardings as the Karnataka High Court had issued an order stating that hoardings must be banned. “I accept the orders of the Election Commission,” he added.
According to ECI officials, another reason was that polling officials in Bengaluru’s Yelahanka, KR Puram, Dasarahalli and Shanthinagar had raised complaints that there were around 7,000 fake names entered into the system. The fake names were allegedly being added to voter rolls in these constituencies.
“It is the EC’s prerogative to take a decision on shifting officials when he or she is found to have failed in discharging his or her duty. The transfer of Mr Manjunath Prasad is for cumulative reasons,” said Chief Electoral Officer Sanjiv Kumar.