Chief Electoral Officer Praveen Kumar on Wednesday clarified that he, not anyone else, was responsible for the cut in “feeding charges” for ex-servicemen personnel whose services were employed for the polls.
Explaining his position, the CEO told a press conference here that as per the Election Commission's instruction, security personnel should be given remuneration as done in the case of polling officers and presiding officers. But, in 2009, the ex-servicemen were paid Rs. 60 over and above the remuneration. As the remuneration included the component for food which was Rs. 100 per person, he had decided that there was no need for any additional payment.
But, this had generated resentment among the ex-servicemen and when he came to know three days ago that the resentment might affect the poll, he took permission from the State government and the decision was taken to restore the additional charges.
Repeating that “I am the culprit,” Mr Praveen Kumar acknowledged that “perhaps it was because of my background in the Finance department, I had done it.”