25 days enough to hold polls, says Delhi CEO

  • HT Correspondent, Hindustan Times, New Delhi
  • Updated: Jan 13, 2015 01:10 IST

The election commission on Monday said it was ready to conduct free and fair polls in the national Capital.

The Delhi Assembly schedule was announced on Monday with the date of polling being fixed for February 7. Counting will take place on February 10.

Asked whether 25 days would be enough to prepare for the poll exercise, chief electoral officer of Delhi Chandra Bhushan Kumar said the body was ready for the polls.

"Since the last assembly elections, 1,59,854 new voters have been added to the electoral list. Only those who have applied for a voter identity card till January 11 will be able to vote in the elections. Voting will take place in 11,763 polling booths across 2,527 locations," said Kumar.


He said all new EVMs will be used in the February 7 election. “We are conducting first-level checks in each district. Over 20,000 EVMs will be used in the polling. As per the election commission’s instructions, we have been ensuring that all polling booths have ramps and are located on the ground floor,” said Kumar. This time, voter verifiable paper audit trail machines (VVPAT) will be used in two assembly constituencies — New Delhi and Delhi Cantt.

The chief electoral officer said his office would soon roll out a detailed plan to help encourage young voters and motivate people to exercise their franchise. “We hope to have a good response from the public. We will run various campaigns to encourage voters. A brand ambassador will be appointed for the campaign,” he said.

Specials camps will be launched in all colleges and higher educational institutions of Delhi using campus ambassadors in the coming week.

Nukkad nataks (street plays) and bands will perform at busy market places and metro stations to create awareness.

“To ensure free and fair polling, we have started putting together teams to be used as flying squads, static surveillance teams;, video surveillance and micro observers. We are making a comprehensive security plan by taking help from central paramilitary forces and additional police forces. We are marking sensitive and hyper sensitive areas. Teams will keep an eye on expenditure and excise violations. We will ensure that the model code of conduct is followed,” explained Kumar.

All the political parties have been briefed about the model code of conduct and a single window clearance will be used to process permission for rallies and meetings.

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