Punjab Chief Electoral Officer Jagdeep Singh Sandhu, who was in the city on Tuesday to oversee the preparations for Ludhiana Municipal Corporation (MC) elections scheduled on February 24, said that 1,155 polling booths will be set up for 10.5 lakh voters across 95 wards to be manned by 75,000 men from Punjab police.
The Election Commission (EC) is targeting to conduct the polls peacefully and thus all sensitive and hyper-sensitive polling booths will be videographed. I have already asked the police commissioner and district electoral authorities to identify such polling stations. The EC is ready to deploy more security personnel for such polling booths,” Sandhu said while addressing a press conference on Tuesday.
He added that some candidates have requested that they want to get some booths videographed at their own expense and the EC is considering it. “We will allow it if any rule is not surpassed. We are checking its viability,” he said. He further said that adequate number of personnel from Punjab police will be available for duty and thus there is no need for paramilitary forces. “We have 75,000 men from Punjab police available for duty, so there is no need yet to call in forces. At least 7,000 persons will be deployed as polling staff,” he added.
He said that in order to ensure that there are no allegations of misplacement of documents of the candidates, the election staff will give the check list of documents to the Returning Officers who will in turn give them acknowledgment receipts. Filing of the nomination will start from February 8 and end on February 13. Scrutiny of papers will be done on February 15. Candidature can be withdrawn on February 16 and symbols will be allotted on February 18.