FROM OUR STAFF CORRESPONDENT
SHILLONG: May 12: At least 21,000 security personnel and around 300 odd civil polling officials will be involved in conducting the May 16 Tura Parliamentary seat by-polls, disclosed the Returning officer, Pravin Bakshi, even as he said that the prelimiry exercise in the form of training for the poll officials was completed today.
Disclosing about the poll preparations, Bakshi told The Sentinel, “The EVMs have reached the 945 polling stations and all out arrangements have been made for the 3780 officials for the smooth conduct of the polls”.
According to Bakshi, one police personnel will be posted in a normal polling station, two armed men in sensitive polling stations and four armed men in hyper sensitive polling booths. Clear in his stand that his office will not compromise in ensuring smooth and free polls, the Returning Officer stated that all plans have been put in place.
Notwithstanding the presence of certain militant groups in Garo Hills, Bakshi said, “There are no indications that they might disrupt the polls but the security plans are already there to thwart any elements.” There 410 hyper sensitive booths and another 126 sensitive booths while 409 polling stations have been declared normal.
“We are involving the police and Central Arm Police Force (CAPF) to ensure smooth conduct of the polls in all areas that needed extra security steps”, stated the Returning Officer.
General Observer, Alka Shrivastav, who had already visited most of the polling stations within Garo Hills is learnt to have expressed her satisfaction with the arrangements. However, as conduct of election entails a lot of hard work and a lot of expenditure, she asked the officers to ensure that they make all out efforts to make this election a success. She said that their responsibility was the most important on the eve of polls and gave them a few practical tips to follow for ensuring peaceful, free and successful polls.