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Sections 58 to 72 of the Tamil Nadu Panchayats Act, 1994 and Section 56 to 56 M of the Tamil Nadu District Municipalities Act, 1920/relevant provisions of the other urban Acts deal with the offences relating to elections. The election offences are listed as below :

1. Infringement of secrecy of election:

Imprisonment which may extend to 6 months or with fine or with both.

2. Impersonation :

Imprisonment for a term which shall not be less than six months and not more than two years and with fine.

3. Promoting enmity between classes in connection with election on grounds of religion, race, caste, community or language, feelings of enmity or hatred:

Imprisonment for a term which may extend to 3 years or with fine or with both.

4. Conduct of public meeting on the day preceding the election day and on the election day:

Fine which may extend to two hundred and fifty rupees.

5. Disturbance at election meeting:

Fine which may extend to two hundred and fifty rupees.

6. Restrictions on printing of pamphlets, posters etc.,

1) No person shall print or publish or cause to be printed or published any election pamphlet or poster which does not bear on its face the name and address of the printer and the publisher there of.

2) No person shall print or cause to be printed any election pamphlet or poster -

(a) unless a declaration as to the identity of the publisher thereof signed by him and attested by two persons to whom he is personally known, is delivered by him to the printer in duplicate; and;

(b) unless, within a reasonable time, after the printing of the document, one copy of the declaration is sent by the printer together with one copy of the document to the Executive Authority or Commissioner or the Secretary, as the case may be.

3) For the purposes of this section-

(a) any process for multiplying copies of a document, other than copying it by hand, shall be deemed to be ‘printing’ and the expression ‘printer’ shall be construed accordingly; and;

(b) “election pamphlet or poster” means any printed pamphlet, hand-bill or other document distributed for the purposes of promoting or prejudicing the election of a candidate or group of candidates or any placard or poster having reference to an election, but doesn’t include any hand-bill, placard or poster merely announcing the date, time, place and other particulars of an election meeting or routine instructions to election agents or workers.

4) Any person who contravenes any of the provisions of sub-section (1) or sub-section (2) shall be punishable with imprisonment for a term which may extend to six months, or with fine which may extend to two thousand rupees, or with both.

7. Officers, Members of police force etc., acting for the furtherance of the prospects of the election of a candidate or persuading or influencing the voting of any person in any manner are liable for imprisonment for a term which may extend to six months or with fine or with both.

8. Canvassing in and near polling station:

No person shall commit any of the following acts within the polling station or in any public or private place within a distance of one hundred metres of the polling station.

a) canvassing for votes; or

b) soliciting of vote of any elector; or

c) persuading any elector not to vote for any particular candidate; or

d) persuading any elector not to vote at the election; or

e) exhibiting any notice or sign (other than an official notice) relating to the election.

This offence shall be a cognizable offence punishable with fine which may extend to two hundred and fifty rupees.

9. Disorderly conduct in or near polling stations like using any apparatus for amplifying or reproducing the human voice viz. Megaphone, loud speaker etc., shouting or acting in a disorderly manner so as to cause annoyance and interference to the persons visiting the polling station and other persons on duty in the polling station: Imprisonment for a term which may extend to three months or with fine or with both.

10. Mis-conduct at the polling station:

Any person who misconducts himself or fails to obey the lawful direction of the polling officer during the hours fixed for poll may be removed from the polling station by the Presiding Officer or by the Police Officer on duty or by any other officer authorised in this behalf by such Presiding Officer.

Any person who has been removed from the polling station, re-enters the polling station without the permission of the Presiding Officer shall be punishable with imprisonment for a term which may extend to 3 months or with fine or with both.

11. Illegal hiring or procuring conveyance at election:

Fine which may extend to two hundred and fifty rupees.

12. Breaches of official duty in connection with election:

Fine which may extend to five hundred rupees.

13. Removal of ballot papers from the polling station and fraudulently takes or attempts to take a ballot paper out of the polling station:

This offence is cognizable nature and the Presiding Officer shall have the power to arrest or direct the police officer to arrest such person.

Imprisonment for a term which may extend to one year or with fine which may extend to five hundred rupees or with both:

14. Other cognizable offences.

No person at an election shall (a) Fraudulently deface or fraudulently destroy any nomination paper.

(b) fraudulently deface, destroy or remove any list, notice or other document affixed by or under the notice or other document affixed by or under the authority of a Returning Officer.

(c) fraudulently deface or fraudulently destroy any ballot paper or the official mark on any ballot paper.

(d) supply any ballot paper to any person or receive any ballot paper from any person or be in possession of any ballot paper without due authority.

(e) fraudulently put anything other than ballot paper in to any ballot box.

(f) destroy, take, open or otherwise interfere with any ballot box or ballot paper then in use for the purpose of election without due authority.

 

 
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