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Stage set for ?ballot vs bullet battle? in Tripura

Tripura to hold elections on Thursday where authorities have tightened security in the wake of a poll-boycott call.
PTI | By Press Trust of India, Agartala
UPDATED ON APR 21, 2004 07:43 PM IST

Tripura will be the only state going to polls on Thursday where authorities have stepped up security fearing violence in the wake of a poll-boycott call issued by the banned All Tripura Tiger Force militant outfit.

Director General of Police GM Srivastav said special security measures were taken in 150 booths located in insurgency prone areas which would be aerially monitored to thwart any attempts by the insurgents to disrupt polling.

About 20,000 security personnel including CRPF, Assam Rifles, BSF, Tripura State Rifles (TSR) and state police had been deployed in the state to ensure peaceful polling, he said.

Elections will be held in two Lok Sabha constituencies, east Tripura and west Tripura, where 19,76,503 voters are eligible to elect their representatives from a total of 12 candidates in the fray, the sources said.

Polling was rescheduled for tomorrow from the earlier April 20 as the date coincided with holy Gariah festival observed by tribals on Tuesday.

Helicopters were being used to drop polling personnel in 23 polling stations located in remote and inaccessible parts of the state, the sources added.

Some polling parties have trekked to polling stations in insurgency-hit remote areas.

A total of 14,000 poll personnel were engaged for smooth conduct of elections in 2372 polling booths and all the poll personnel were brought under insurance cover.

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