Press "Enter" to skip to content

Assembly elections: 65,000 paramilitary personnel to be deployed for polls

More than 65,000 Central Armed Police Force (CAPF) personnel will be deployed ahead of the upcoming assembly elections in Uttar Pradesh, Punjab, Uttarakhand, Manipur and Goa, officials have said. As many as 380 of these 650 CAPF companies will be sent to Uttar Pradesh that has the highest number of seats and the longest polling period with seven phases, officials added.The border state of Punjab will also see heavy security deployment. “In the 2017 polls, more than 450 companies were mobilised in Punjab. This year, the state administration has sought more troops due to the ongoing farmers’ protest and drone threats,” explained a home ministry official. The Union home ministry is said to have identified central forces from the CRPF, BSF, ITBP, CISF and SSB from neighbouring states, where election is not being held, to be kept on standby, said a government official. Security forces have been instructed to strictly adhere to standard operating procedure (SOPs), strengthen the security grid at sensitive and hypersensitive polling booths to avoid any untoward incidents.

To avoid large gatherings, particularly at sensitive poll booths in Uttar Pradesh, the state authorities have been advised to invoke Section 144 of the CrPC. The order restricts unlawful assembly and movement, holding of public meetings, carrying of weapons, sticks, banners, placards. CAPF personnel have been asked to ensure that all critical polling station are covered by CCTVs, video and still cameras, as per the EC guidelines. According to the EC, Uttar Pradesh will vote in seven phases beginning February 10, Punjab (117 seats), Uttarakhand (70 seats) and Goa (40 seats) will have single-day voting on February 14, while the 60-seat Manipur electorate will vote in two phases. Elections will be held for 690 assembly seats in these five states, and 18.3 crpeople, including 8.55 cr women, will be eligible to cast their votes.Concerned over the rapid spread of Covid-19 virus, the EC has barred physical rallies till January 15 and a review would be made after that since the “ground situation is dynamic”.

Source: Economic Times