Sunil Arora, Chief Election commissioner of India today reviewed the election preparedness of Punjab, Haryana and Chandigarh in connection with the forthcoming Lok Sabha Elections in 2019.
The Commission began the review with a meeting with the Chief Electoral Officers of Punjab, Haryana and UT of Chandigarh and discussed multifarious issues related to provision of Assured Minimum Facilities (AMFs) at the Polling Stations, strengthening of manpower and infrastructure of CEO’s offices, filling up of all vacant positions of elections functionaries at the field level, availability of EVMs/VVPATs and other election material, adequate budget provisions etc. The Chief Electoral officers of Punjab, Haryana and UT of Chandigarh also briefed the Chief Election commissioner (CEC) about the progress of Special Summary Revision (w.r.t 01-01-2019), Voter Helpline (1950) and other IT related Applications.
This was followed by a comprehensive discussion with the Chief Secretary, DGP, Home Secretary and other senior Officials of Punjab and Haryana, as also with the Advisor to Administrator and other senior officials of Union Territory of Chandigarh on the various election related arrangements to be secured for the smooth and peaceful conduct of elections a free, fair, inclusive, participative and credible manner.
Chief Election Commissioner directed the CEOs to ensure that all Contact Centres with a uniform number –‘ 1950’ shall be made operational as a single point contact for all election related information and facilitation to voters.
It was also directed that urgent and time-bound action must be taken to ensure the availability of Assured Minimum Facilities (AMFs) at every polling station for the convenience and facilitation of the voters.
Chief Election Commissioner also emphasized the urgent need to create a comprehensive data base of PwD voters along with their PS-wise mapping to ensure that adequate assistance is provided to all PwD voters on day of Poll, which is very important to realize the Commission’s motto of ‘No Voter to be Left Behind’. The Chief Election Commissioner directed that forthcoming Lok Sabha Elections should be made most friendly for voters and all necessary facilitations should be provided specially to Third gender, Persons with disability and senior citizens.
Mr. Sunil Arora also stressed on the imperative of imparting robust and comprehensive training to all levels of election related officials on the entire spectrum of election related matters including ERO-NET, BLO-NET, revision of Electoral Rolls and implementation of IT- applications like Suvidha, Samadhan, Sugam and C-VIGIL App, as also Electronically Transmitted Postal Ballot System (ETPBS).
The review meeting was attended by senior officers of ECI, Mr. Umesh Sinha, Senior Deputy Election Commissioner, Mr. Dhirendra Ojha, Director General and Mr. Nikhil Kumar, Director.