Kolkata, April 17 (IANS) Stating that security of voters and polling officials was its topmost priority, the Election Commission on Wednesday said there would be sufficient number of central forces as also state police for the second phase of Lok Sabha polls in West Bengal on Thursday.
“Security of the voters and polling officials is the top priority of the Commission. All the polling stations will have adequate armed forces. This time, there will be sufficient rather more central forces than the last phase,” Additional Chief Electoral Officer Sanjay Basu told reporters here.
He said all security measures have been taken in 1,868 polling stations of Jalpaiguri, 1,899 in Darjeeling and 1,623 stations of Raiganj. There will be webcasting and micro observers in most of the polling stations.
If webcasting is not possible due to network issues, the video footage will be taken.
Asked about their plans to address Electronic Voting Machine (EVM) malfunctions, Basu said: “We have given a flyer with written instruction to the presiding officers, to help them in understanding the steps to be taken in case of any problem. Other than that, ECI engineers will act within the earliest possible time.”
Since the announcement of the election, different political parties like the Forward Bloc, the Trinamool Congress, the Bahujan Samaj Party, the Bharatiya Janata Party, the Congress, the Communist Party of India, the Communist Party of India-Marxist and the Revolutionary Socialist Party have submitted a total of 428 complaints out which 22 are pending for disposal and the rest have been addressed.
Regarding BJP’s complaint against Trinamool leader Ratna Ghosh Kar’s comment about ‘chase away central forces with brooms’, Basu said: “The Election Commission has been informed about the same”.