Half of polling booths in City declared 'sensitive'

Half of polling booths in City declared 'sensitive'

Half of polling booths in City declared 'sensitive'

Over 12K security personnel to be deployed across B’lore

Almost half of the 6,823 polling stations in Bangalore have been categorised into sensitive and hyper-sensitive. 

As many as 2,044 polling stations have been declared sensitive and 1,361 hyper-sensitive, Commissioner of Police Raghavendra Auradkar said here on Monday in an interaction with reporters on the police’s preparedness for the April 17 Lok Sabha elections. 

A total of 12,236 security personnel, including 1,000 civil defence wardens, will be deployed across the City to maintain law and order and to ensure that people vote in a free and fearless manner. 

Besides, 399 sector mobile squads will keep tabs on polling activities across the City. Each squad will man 17 closely-located booths. In addition, 153 mobile squads consisting of assistant commissioners of police (ACPs) and inspectors will be formed. Twenty-four other mobile squads, headed by DCPs, will coordinate the overall efforts. This apart, 75 platoons of the Central Reserve Police Force, along with the Karnataka State Reserve Police, will be on duty on the polling day, Auradkar said. 

District Election Officer and BBMP Commissioner M Lakshminarayana, who was present at the press conference, said that around 40,000 personnel would be deployed on the polling day. Seventy per cent of the 62.97 lakh voters in the City had been issued voter identity cards, higher than the national average of 68 per cent, he added. 

Around 235 polling stations in eight Assembly constituencies will be under CCTV surveillance and 200 polling stations have been identified for webcasting. Real-time images of these polling booths can be accessed online. Around 200 engineering students have been trained to monitor webcasting.

As many as 715 voter facilitation desks will be established at 1,956 polling booths. A total of 622 micro-observers, who have been given special training in monitoring polling, will be deployed at select polling stations, Lakshminarayana added. 

Polling booths in Bangalore South Lok Sabha constituency will have voter-verified paper audit trail (VVPAT), under which individual voters can see on a piece of paper that will pop out of the electronic voting machine, to whom they have cast their vote. “The slip can be seen only for seven seconds and the paper slip will automatically get dropped into a box next to the EVM and cannot be retrieved,” Auradkar said. 

After the model code of conduct was enforced, the City police seized Rs 1.48 crore in cash and valuables worth Rs 2.56 crore, including sarees and rice sacks allegedly meant to be distributed to voters as freebies. As many as 124 people had been arrested in this connection.