In order to ensure free and fair elections in the left-wing extremism (LFE) affected districts in the state, the Election Commission of India (ECI) has devised an elaborate strategy aimed at minimising the impact of LFE on voting.
The ECI would be working closely with the office of the chief electoral officer (CEO), Madhya Pradesh and district police officials in this regard.
Technology, including GPS devices, would be brought in a big way to ensure smooth voting.
During a recent meeting, the election commission asked the CEO, MP to prepare a special strategy for holding elections in the LFE-affected districts in the state. An elaborate vulnerability mapping exercise is to be carried out well in advance along with an action plan in consultation with the ECI.
There are eight LFE-affected districts in MP -- Balaghat, Shahdol, Umaria, Anuppur, Mandla, Dindori, Sidhi and Singrauli.
The commission and the CEO, MP’s office will hold a meeting with all superintendents of police on July 25 in which the matter is likely to be taken up.
The commission has also asked the CEO office to ensure that technology be used to thwart any attempts to obstruct elections by the LFE groups.
The use of GPS devices would be adopted in these areas besides other technological applications.
The CEO is to also hold regular video conferencing with district magistrates and superintendents of police regarding law and order.
Sources said the chances of obstruction of the election process are far higher in Chhattisgarh as the state has a greater degree of vulnerability vis-a-vis left-wing extremism.
However, since the elections would be held almost simultaneously in Madhya Pradesh and Chhattisgarh, larger paramilitary presence in the neighbouring state could provoke movement of LFE groups to MP.