Take stern steps for fair poll, EC told

Observing that the phrase “once bitten, twice shy” is squarely applicable to the Central Election Commission (CEC) when it comes to R K Nagar wherein the by-poll was rescinded, the Madras High Court on Monday, expressed hope that CEC will take all effective steps and measures with iron hand and prevent the illegalities of bribing the voters, so that the sole lifeline of democracy is achieved.
Take stern steps for fair poll, EC told
Polling officials posted for RK Nagar by-elections get familiarised with the operations


Justice K Ravichandrabaabu disposed the plea moved by DMK candidate  K Maruthu Ganesh seeking to direct the CEC to deploy adequate number of CRPF personnel; to install CCTVs in the streets of the constituency, to telecast live-webcasting of polling and counting in RK Nagar, after recording the submission made by the Additional Solicitor General G Rajagopal on the steps taken by the CEC considering the situation and circumstances prevailing in the constituency. The steps detailed out included deployment of 15 companies of Central Armed Police Force and seven senior observers, which according to the Commission is the highest in number in the country. 
Moreover, 225 IP CCTV/ surveillance cameras have been deployed in major streets and junctions and that web casting has been  ordered to be done in the all the 258 polling stations, the report submitted said. The report also noted that generally in any assembly constituency, only three Flying Squad Teams (FSTs) and 3 Static Surveillance Teams (SSTs) are deployed. But for RK Nagar the deployment of these squads has been increased manifold that a total of 107 teams, including 20 video Surveillance Teams (VSTs) with officials from Central Paramilitary Force, have been deployed keeping in view the sensitiveness of the constituency and past experience. 
Also, considering a large number of complaints, as a firsttime measure, 50 mobile parties on two wheelers are also additionally being deployed along with SMS and GPS based monitoring to ensure that there is no delay in movement of all the FST, SST and VST teams to attend to the complaints. A camera has also been fixed on top of the vehicles to monitor how the teams handled the complaints after reaching the spot, which will be monitored in at the 24X7 Control room set up at the District Elections Officers and the Returning Officer’s offices, the report noted and added that for attending to complaints of distribution of money outside the constituency, special flying squads have also been created.

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