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To avoid mistakes during polls, ECI starts training and certification programme

Returning and assistant returning officers will be taking the course.

rajasthan elections 2018 Updated: Jul 09, 2018 21:57 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Hindustan Times, Jaipur
Chief Election Officer (CEO) Ashwani Bhagat addresses a certificate programme for RO and ARO at HCM RIPA in Jaipur on Monday. (HT Photo)

The Election Commission of India for the first time has started a certificate programme for returning and assistant returning officers, so that no mistake is done during polls, chief electoral officer Ashwini Bhagat said on Monday.

The officers will be issued certificates after they are trained and pass the examinations taken by the Election Commission (EC), Bhagat said while addressing the inaugural session of a four-day training programme that started at Harishchandra Mathur State Institute of Public Administration.

Returning and assistant returning officers play an important role in elections; if they are trained, then elections can be conducted without mistakes, he said.

“Many times officers who had been conducting elections for the last many years also commit blunders.” Citing an example, he said, “In many elections, a big problem has to be faced due to mistakes, such as not clearing the mock poll data.”

He asked officers to take part in the programme and ask maximum questions to clear their doubts.

Jaipur divisional commissioner T Ravikanth asked returning and assistant returning officers to read the orders and circulars issues by the commission or the department. “Compared to other states, officers of Rajasthan are much better,” he added.

Additional chief election officer Rekha Gupta said, “During elections, returning and assistant returning officers get statutory powers, and in such a situation, their responsibility increases.”

Eight experts from EC will train 120 officers from Rajasthan during the programme. Officers will be trained on model code of conduct, monitoring poll expenses, postal ballots, nomination of candidates and withdrawal of names, approving election symbol, arrangements on the polling day, management of polling parties, facilities to disabled, counting, announcing the results, EVM, VVPT, and so on.

First Published: Jul 09, 2018 21:57 IST