PUTA election: Returning officer proposes October 8, 9 as polling dates
The returning officer for Panjab University Teachers’ Association (PUTA) election 2020 on Tuesday proposed October 8 and 9 as new dates for polling.
The poll for the officer-bearers of PU teachers’ body was earlier scheduled for September 25 and 26. However, the election was postponed after several teachers raised concerns over its conduct during the pandemic, prompting returning officer Vijay Nagpal to seek sanction for the poll from Chandigarh deputy commissioner Mandip Singh Brar.
The proposal of new polling dates comes after the deputy commissioner on Monday wrote to the returning officer seeking details of the fresh dates, venues of polling and compliance with standard operating procedures (SOPs) as per the directions of Chandigarh administration and the Union ministry of home affairs (MHA).
Nagpal on Tuesday announced that fresh dates of polling with same SOPs and programme as announced earlier have been submitted to the deputy commissioner for his clearance.
“I have proposed the new dates and submitted them to the deputy commissioner. The other details of SOPs and venues have been provided, which are the same announced for the polling on September 25 and 26.”
SOPs for election
The polling is scheduled for two days with time slots for small groups of teachers to cast their votes. According to the SOPs, wearing masks is mandatory and every individual has to undergo thermal screening at entry points. Two different venues have been selected for the polling. The voters are advised to bring their own pens, while gloves will be provided to all. The voters are instructed to comply with social distancing norms. Services of professional consultants have been availed for complete sanitisation and other precautions at venues.
Voters, who have tested positive for Covid-19, those awaiting their result or those who have been quarantined, have been requested to refrain from voting.
Reason behind postponement
Six teachers of university had written to PU authorities and expressed their concerns over the conduct of polls amid pandemic, while requesting its (PU’s) intervention into the matter. The returning officer had then written to the deputy commissioner for his sanction to conduct the poll, but a day before the polling, the election was postponed as no response was received from DC Brar.