The State Election Commission (SEC) declared 74 polling stations in Chembur as sensitive — prone to law and order situation. Similarly, 58 sensitive polling station were earmarked in Govandi and Deonar. The SEC also identified 17 hypersensitive areas in south Mumbai, where extra security forces will be deployed on February 21 — the voting day.
A total of 630 polling areas across Mumbai have been declared sensitive by the SEC. While 613 polling booths are likely to be exposed to malpractices, police and SEC vigil will be higher at the 17 hypersensitive polling stations.
After a lengthy exercise of analysing the past incidents of bogus voting, rioting or any unlawful incident on voting day was carried out by the returning officers appointed across the 24 administrative wards, for which help was sought from the police department. There are a total of 7,304 polling stations that are set up across 1,300-odd polling locations.
The election proceedings in BMC wards A to E, comprising areas such as Colaba, CST, Masjid Bunder, Malabar Hill, Byculla and Tardeo, are handled by the returning officers appointed by the SEC. It is these officers that have asked for extra police personnel be deployed in these areas, as the hyper sensitive and sensitive wards are listed in these wards.
A civic official, associated with the election department, said, “The areas where law and order situation can arise on the basis of the history of the polling station are usually guarded by the additional police personnel.”
In addition, SEC will also be deploying 750 BEST buses on election duty, along with 290 mini and regular private buses. It also plans to hire 3,052 taxis, of which 1,375 alone will be used February 21. The hired vehicles will be used for transporting election material and ferrying officials.