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'All arrangements in place for by-polls to 5 Assembly seats in Assam'


Guwahati, Oct 28: The election machinery in Assam has put in place all necessary arrangements for the smooth conduct of by-polls to five assembly constituencies on October 30.

As many as 7.96 electors are eligible to exercise their franchise to decide the fate of 31 contestants in Gossaigaon, Bhabanipur, Tamulpur, Mariani, and Thowra constituencies, a state Election Department release said here on Thursday.

To make sure that there is no problem on the law and order front and to keep a strong vigil on expenditure incurred, the Election Commission of India (ECI) has appointed General, Police, and Expenditure Observers, the release said.

Personnel of Central Armed Police Forces (CAPF) will be deployed at each polling station and live monitoring and webcasting have been arranged by the Chief Electoral Officer (CEO), Assam, for monitoring the voting process live on October 30, as per the ECI's direction.

Webcasting will be done in all the 1,176 polling stations, including 285 in Gossaigaon, 213 in Bhabanipur, 322 in Tamulpur, 183 in Mariani, and 173 in Thowra constituencies.

To motivate voters for exercising their franchise and strictly follow COVID-19 protocol in the polling stations, an awareness campaign is being conducted under the ECI's Systematic Voters' Education and Electoral Participation (SVEEP) programme.

In the backdrop of the coronavirus pandemic, ECI has taken precautionary measures to ensure that all polling stations strictly follow COVID-19 safety protocols for the safety of voters and election officials.

Each polling station will be sanitised a day ahead of polling.

The facility of thermal scanning, hand sanitisers, face masks will also be made available at the polling stations, the release said.

A total of 7,96,456 electors, including 3,93,078 women and four third-gender persons, are eligible to exercise their franchise.

There are also 3,165 service voters, 8,864 electors above 80 years of age and 4, 998 fall under the People with Disability (PwD) category.

Tamulpur has the highest number of voters at 2,17,432 while Thowra has the lowest number of voters at 1,15,971 voters.

To ensure an inclusive election, the option of postal ballot facility has been extended to senior citizens above the age of 80 years, PwDs, COVID-19 suspect or affected persons, in addition to people employed in essential services.

Arrangements like transport facilities for elderly people, assistance to PwDs and senior citizens have also been made at the polling stations.

For the convenience of opting for transportation by registering online, a mobile app-Divyaang Sarathi Nirvachan - has been developed for the PwD voters.

A total of 5,410 polling personnel will be engaged., the release said.

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