Silchar, March 8: Media persons who have been certified by the Election Commission of India (ECI) for poll day reporting fall under the category of absentee voters (essential services voters), said Biswajit Saikia, in-charge Deputy Director of Information and Public Relations Office.
Saikia has appointed Suman Choudhury, District Media Expert NHM as the nodal officer on Monday to create awareness about the same among media people.
Meanwhile, sharing her thoughts, Deputy Commissioner Cachar Keerthi Jalli IAS, said “ it is very heartening to see that the ECI has placed media persons as essential services voters. The media persons who are representatives of the fourth pillar of democracy work to ensure transparency and report non-biasedly on poll process. The Administration has already started taking steps to ensure their smooth voting process through Postal Ballot/ETPBS options. This will ensure they can render their services without a break for casting a vote."
Further, the Deputy Commissioner added to say "the certified media persons will be given Form 12D which will need to be filled up by such voters and attested by the nodal officer and submitted along with the certification of the ECI by March 10, 2021."
It is pertinent to mention here that absenteeism voter has been defined in clause(a) of the Rule 27-A of the Conduct of Elections Rules, 1961 as a person belonging to the class of persons notified by the Commission in terms of clause (c) of Section 60 of the Representation of the People Act, 1951 comprising persons employed in essential services who on account of the compulsion of the duties are not able to be present in their polling stations on the day of poll.
The assembly election is scheduled to be held in three phases in Assam -- on March 27, April 1 and April 6. Barak Valley, which has 15 assembly seats in three districts, will have its election on April 1.