Extensive security for sixth phase of WB polls
EC has made extensive security arrangement for the 14 Maoist-affected seats, for the 6th phase of WB polls.
Kolkata: Election Commission has made extensive security arrangement for the 14 Maoist-affected seats, spread over three districts, for the sixth and final phase of West Bengal Assembly election on May 10.
"Based on reports from intelligence and other agencies, we have prepared our strategy. We have worked out a security system and made it fool-proof," State's Chief Electoral Officer Sunil Gupta told reporters on Sunday.
Besides 41 companies of Central forces permanently deployed in the three districts -- Bankura, West Midnapore and Purulia -- to tackle Maoists, 607 more companies of central forces coupled with a huge number of state forces will be deployed for the polls, EC officials said.
"Roughly there will be a deployment of one lakh state and central forces to man 26, 57,434 electors going to vote in 3534 polling stations in the three districts," they said. "The pressure of the security personnel in the sixth phase will be high and there will be an element of surprise in the checking and patrolling system to make it more effective," Gupta added.
"All inter-state and inter-district borders have been sealed to prevent any kind of infiltration," Gupta said. "We will use huge number of satellite phones and modern gadgets like anti-explosive devices provided by home ministry and other agencies, which are capable of detecting and defusing improvised explosive devices and landmines," Gupta added.
"The phones will be with the polling officials, sector office and security personnel in remote areas so that we don't lose connectivity at any moment," Gupta said.
"Apart from that, three helicopters have been pressed into action for air-surveillance and co-ordination with ground forces to thwart any kind of subversive activities," Gupta said.
Arrangements have also been made to air-lift victims of violence in the event of an emergency, he said. Meanwhile, re-poll was recommended in one booth so far for the fifth phase of polls.
"The EVM in booth No. 98 of Khandoghosh Constituency in Burdwan district was showing erratic results and a re-poll has been recommended," Gupta said.
The final polling turnout in the fifth phase was 85.25 per cent, he said.
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