EC appoints Anand Kumar as Rajasthan CEO

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The Election Commission of India (ECI) today nominated senior IAS officer Anand Kumar as the Chief Electoral Officer (CEO) of Rajasthan replacing Ashwini Bhagat. The ECI in consultation with the government of Rajasthan nominated Kumar on the post with effect from the date he takes charge and until further orders, an ECI notification said. The decision comes a barely months ahead of Assembly elections in the state which are due this year end. Kumar, who was posted as principal secretary of medical education department in Rajasthan, replaces Bhagat who was holding the post since November 2016. Kumar hails from Rewari district of Haryana and has held several top posts in state government. He was the district collector in six districts of the state and was also the secretary and commissioner of the panchayati raj department. With elections approaching, the political temperature in the state has also been rising. Congress leaders in Rajasthan have alleged there were nearly 45 lakh fake voters in the states electoral rolls. Demanding removal of the alleged fake entries, opposition Congress had moved the Election Commission to conduct a thorough probe. It had alleged abnormal increase in numbers of voters in the last few years, saying that the swell was disproportionate to the growth in states population.