ECI reviews Arunachal’s poll preparedness

ITANAGAR, Feb 12: An Election Commission of India (ECI) delegation led by Deputy Election Commissioner Manoj Kumar Sahoo conducted a comprehensive review of election preparedness of Arunachal Pradesh in a meeting here on Monday, evaluating the State’s arrangements for the upcoming simultaneous elections 2024.

In the meeting, the Deputy Election Commissioner underscored the paramount importance of transparency, impartiality, and inclusivity throughout the electoral process, focusing on ensuring enforcement of rules and laws as well as strict monitoring of all aspects of election management.

Earlier, all the District Election Officers (DEOs) and SPs gave detailed presentations on different aspects of election process. Requirements for webcasting of polling process, postal ballots, and shadow areas were discussed. Efforts being made for special voters like PwD voters and senior citizens were also presented.

DEOs also presented their requirements in terms of vehicles, manpower and other infrastructure, while the SPs emphasized the efforts being made by them on seizure of illegal cash, liquor, drugs and curbing other unfair election practices. Requirements for special police forces were also discussed, a communiqué from the office of Arunachal Pradesh Chief Electoral Officer (CEO) said.

It said, the ECI team discussed in detail the election expenditure monitoring process. They mentioned the Acts and laws which apply to election process. Other aspects of election process such as home voting, electoral roll modification, etc were also discussed.

In his concluding address, Deputy Election Commissioner Sahoo lauded the proactive approach adopted by the state election machinery and urged continued vigilance to maximize voter participation and ensure fair elections. He specially asked DEOs to publicize apps like C-VIGIL and voter helpline for resolving all complaints during elections. He stressed the importance of Home voting, postal ballots and voting by polling personnel.

The Deputy Election Commissioner asked the district teams (district election offices) to ensure the quality of training of polling personnel, and the SPs to make a calendar of training for the police personnel, besides asking the DEOs and district police chiefs to be physically present during the trainings.

While conveying that he was quite confident of the preparations of the district teams, Sahoo also urged the DEOs to ensure a detailed and enforceable district election management plan is made. They were also asked to coordinate with all PSUs and all paramilitary forces to make necessary arrangements in advance. He also strictly emphasized that the DEOs must ensure that no government official is involved with any political party events.

Reaffirming the state's commitment to conducting free, fair, and peaceful elections, CEO Pawan Kumar Sain expressed gratitude to the ECI team for their valuable guidance and pledged full cooperation in implementing their recommendations.

The ECI team is going to conduct meetings with the State Chief Secretary and DGP, as well as with State Nodal officers and Enforcement agencies on Tuesday to review the issues at their level, the communique added.