Over 60,000 paramilitary forces for Jangalmahal | kolkata | Hindustan Times
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Over 60,000 paramilitary forces for Jangalmahal

kolkata Updated: May 05, 2011 15:55 IST
HT Correspondent

Over 60,000 paramilitary personnel, few thousand policemen from the state and three choppers fitted with surveillance cameras will be in action when the 14 Maoist violence-hit constituencies go to the polls in the last phase on May 10. More than two lakh voters will exercise their franchise on that day.

The EC has identified around 1,800 trouble mongers and intimidators, which includes Maoists, criminals and political cadres.

An official said although there were several politically sensitive polling stations in other phases, the last phase has several sensitive stations from the law and order point of view.

“Although we are replicating the Bihar model, the number of paramilitary forces in each polling station would be 1.5 times higher than what was deployed in the Maoist violence-hit districts of Bihar,” a senior official said.

Forces have already started moving in some of the constituencies from Wednesday. Voting hours, which were from 7 am till 5 pm in the other phases, would be reduced to 3 pm in the last phase.

“We would be making special security arrangements, and if necessary, the intimidated voters would be escorted to the polling stations to cast their ballot. Several security plans are being chalked out and constant review is being done. The final plan would be chalked out a day before the poll,” the official added.

The Maoists had initially decided not to boycott the polls. Later, they changed their stance and called for a poll boycott. They had even threatened to attack Congress and CPI(M) supporters and candidates if they dared to campaign in Jangalmahal.