Millennium Post

EC to deploy 700 companies of Central Forces

Kolkata: The Election Commission has decided to deploy a total of 700 companies of Central Forces in eight constituencies of Bengal which will go to polls on May 12.

The Commission is leaving no stone unturned to ensure a free and fair election in the remaining two phases in the state. The EC officials including Special Police Observer Vivek Dubey have held a number of meetings with the election officials in the districts and the police officers to assess the overall poll preparedness. The election officials also took stock of the law and order situation. The district police officers have been asked to identify the trouble-prone areas.

The Election Commission is taking preventive measures for the remaining phases of the Lok Sabha elections in Bengal so that poll processes are not disrupted at any booth due to the malfunctioning of the EVMs.

Five phases of elections have already been completed. On earlier occasions, there were reports of EMV malfunctioning due to which the poll process was suspended for a while. The Commission is taking measures to bridge the gaps so that an EMV machine can be replaced by another if it malfunctions. During the recently concluded fifth phase elections, in some booths, the EVMs and Voter Verifiable Paper Audit Trails (VVPATs) malfunctioned due to excessive heat.

According to sources at the office of the Chief Electoral Officer in the state, in each polling station there will be adequate arrangements of alternative EVMs and VVPATs to meet the crisis. The EC has already started dispatching additional EVMs and VVPATs to all the polling booths. The eight parliamentary constituencies that go to polls on May 12 are Tamluk, Kanthi, Ghatal, Jhargram, Midnapore, Purulia, Bankura and Bishnupur.

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