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Election Commission makes comprehensive management plans for polls in Darjeeling

SILIGURI : A comprehensive election management plan would be made for Darjeeling district in the light of its geographical location and terrain for the upcoming Assembly elections, West Bengal chief electoral officer (CEO) Sunil Gupta said here on Friday. Gupta held a meeting with Darjeeling administration officials and police officers of the district at the State Guest House here. "Every district has some special features. Some parts of Darjeeling district are plains and some have mountains. Some polling stations fall in remote places. The district administration will make a comprehensive election management plan so that we can take adequate care of all the polling stations and are ready to address all possible eventualities, while also taking care of the required logistic arrangements, according to its geographical terrain," Gupta told reporters after the meeting. He said he was satisfied with the poll preparedness of the district. “We reviewed the preparedness for the elections of the entire district and it appears to me that all the preparations which are required for conducting free and fair elections are absolutely on course as desired by the commission,” Gupta added. “We will send detailed reports after the visits of the districts to the Election Commission. At the same time, we keep informing the commission on what is happening in the fields,” he said.

The chief electoral officer said the commission had been reviewing the preparations for the polls at various levels. “We are assessing the level of preparedness which is required to conduct smooth elections, to ensure that all the Electronic Voting Machines are in order. \The first-level checking has been completed in the presence of the political parties. The process of engaging personnel, especially polling personnel, counting personnel, personnel which will be required for election duties, is completely ready. We are conducting a series of training programmes, which started a few months ago, starting from the state level to the booth level for various personnel who will be engaged in poll duties. It is on the verge of completion,” the chief electoral officer said. Gupta added that the issue of preventive measures before the polls is also being looked into.

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