To ensure ethical voting and the increase in the overall turn out of the voters, the Election Commission of India (ECI) has decided to the send awareness observers in the state.
The ECI had earlier decided to deploy expenditure observers, police observers and the special observers to monitor various aspects of the electoral process in the forthcoming assembly elections. Amit Jyoti Bhattacharya, deputy electoral officer on Friday said that around 10 central awareness election observers will soon come to the state. The senior officers of the Indian Information Services, these awareness observers will make the voters aware about the election processes and encourage them so that more number of people exercise their franchise. These officers will visit all the districts and will hold campaigns regarding the ethical voting. These officers who will in the charge of various districts are Rajender Choudhury for West Midnapore and Purulia, Mahesh Kumar for Bankura, Kismat Anil Sagar for Alipurduar, Jalpaiguri, Darjeeling, Dinesh Kumar for North 24-Parganas and Howrah, Pankaj Pandey for South 24-Parganas, Kolkata South and Hooghly, Ritu Shukla for North Kolkata and Burdwan, Rajib Jain for Murshidabad and Nadia. All the special observers are expected to arrive in the city by Friday night. These special observers will be divided in 5 teams and reach to the districts to take a stock of the overall poll preparations. Each team will be headed by a Chief Electoral Officers (CEO) from various states. They will begin their district tours from Sayurday. They will submit a report to the commission on March 23 on the basis of the observations of the law and order situation.
It was learnt that there will be a special training at the Commission’s office in the city for the expenditure observers who will mainly monitor the election expenses of the candidates from various political parties contesting the election.
Friday was the last day for filing nominations for the first day of the phase I election scheduled on April 4. Bhattacharya said that around 138 nominations from various political parties have been submitted among which around 43 nominations were filed on the last day. The scrutiny will be done on Saturday while the last date of the withdrawal of nominations is on March 21.
Meanwhile, five special teams, led by Chief Electoral Officers of different states, on Friday started a five-day visit to the districts of West Bengal to undertake a comprehensive review of poll preparedness.
Deputy CEO Amitjyoti Bhattacharya said the teams have started arriving in the districts and started working.
“They will see the overall poll preparedness till March 22,” he said.