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EC official to visit Bengal on Thursday, likely to issue guidelines for deployment of central forces

EC official to visit Bengal on Thursday, likely to issue guidelines for deployment of central forces

Kolkata: Deputy Election Commissioner Sudeep Jain, who is in charge of West Bengal, will visit the state on Thursday to oversee the preparedness for the upcoming assembly elections, officials said.

During his visit, Jain is scheduled to hold meetings with district magistrates, police superintendents and other senior officials of the state, they said.

"Mr Jain is scheduled to arrive on Thursday to have a look at the overall preparedness for the assembly elections.

He will also take stock of the law and order situation in the state. The district administrations have been asked to prepare presentations on their preparations for the elections," an official of the office of the chief electoral officer (CEO) told PTI on Monday.

Jain may also meet officers transferred to different departments, mainly in the administration and the police, he said.

"There have been several reshuffles in the administration as well as in the police departments recently.

Mr Jain may meet them as well as ADG (Law and Order), senior police officers, and the chief secretary and home secretary," he said.

Jain will meet divisional commissioners, district election officers, zonal IGs, DIGs, SPs, CPs of all the districts on Thursday, the official said.

The top EC official may also seek a report on the deployment of the central forces in different districts, he said.

"Jain may chalk out guidelines on the deployment of the central forces," the official said, adding he may also hold meetings with senior officers of the central government here.

The official said Jain would submit a report to the Election Commission after his visit.

The ECI on Monday formed a three-member committee to oversee the deployment of the central forces in the state, another official said.

The committee comprises the CEO, ADG (Law and Order) who is the nodal officer of the police, and the state coordinator of the central forces deployed here, he said.

Three companies of Seema Suraksha Bal (SSB) will soon reach the city as part of the central force deployment for the ensuing assembly elections, a source in the CEO office said.

"The three companies of SSB may start route march in the city and will focus mainly on area dominations," the official said.

The Kolkata Police will assist the central forces during their stay here and have decided to accommodate the SSB personnel at its training institute in the Hastings area.

"Arrangements have been made to accommodate the senior officers and commandants of the force in hotels. We are also getting other sites, mainly school and college premises, ready to provide lodging to the additional central forces scheduled to come to the city," he added.

Elections to the 294-member West Bengal assembly are likely in April-May.

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