EC gearing up for Assam polls


GUWAHATI, March 1: With only a month left for the State to go for Assembly elections, the model code of conduct is expected anytime soon after announcement of poll dates. The Election Commission of India (ECI) is in constant touch with the State Election department, taking last minute inputs.

Meanwhile, as per directions of the ECI, Additiol Chief Secretary to Chief Minister Tarun Gogoi, MGVK Bhanu was relieved of the charge of Home and Political department on Tuesday. Sources have informed that as per ECI norms, officials attached to the Chief Minister in the capacity of commissioner, secretary or additiol chief secretary cannot be in charge of Home and Political department at the time of elections.

On the other hand, assessment of polling stations to be set up in the State is in the fil stage of completion. The State Election department has also assessed the number of police and security forces that will be required in the State for the polls. It has been learnt that for smooth electioneering, the State government will soon approach the Centre seeking additiol security forces from the Central Armed Police Force.

It may be mentioned that this year, there will be a total of 24,888 polling stations in the State, of which 608 are new polling stations since the Lok Sabha elections held in 2014. With 93 polling stations, Cachar district has the highest number of new polling stations, followed by gaon district with 83 new polling stations. In 2011, there were total 23,853 polling stations in the State. In the last five years, 1,035 new polling stations have been set up in the State.

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