STATESMAN NEWS SERVICE
Siliguri, 21 July
Seven companies of Central forces will be deployed along with required state arm forces for conducting rural polls on 25 July in Cooch Behar, where the administration has identified a total of 449 polling stations as hypersensitive and 836 out of 2,288 polling booths as sensitive across the district.
A senior district administrative official said that Central forces would be not be deployed in 1,236 polling stations, which have been identified as single polling station premises, following the system of deployment of Central forces. Though some of the single polling stations belong to sensitive and hypersensitive category, the administration has planned to deploy state armed forces for those polling stations to conduct three-tier panchayat elections free and fair. A panel comprising the district magistrate, superintendent of police and district observer will monitor the entire deployment of Central forces and state armed forces maintain law and order across the district during rural polls. The state election commission has appointed 11 observers to keep vigil on the entire process of conducting rural polls and in order to watch overall situation one district observer has been posted there.
Polling personnel and security forces will leave for all 2,288 polling stations on 24 July, according to the district election officer. The polling stations, which were under water in Tufanganj sub-division in the second week of July due to heavy rains, are all set for conducting polls.
The district magistrate, Mr Mohan Gandhi, along with the sub-divisional and the block development officers, conducted a survey recently to know the status of those booths. The administration decided there is no need to relocate existing polling stations. The block officials have been asked to make arrangements if some polling stations are affected by heavy rains a day before the rural polls.