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Legislative Assemblies of Goa, Manipur, Punjab, Uttarakhand and Uttar Pradesh 2022.

Election Commission of India meeting.

The news: In the meeting, fifteen former civil servants who have past experience with election processes, have been included in the team as Special Observers for the current poll going states.

  • The Special Observers will be supervising and monitoring the work being done by the electoral machinery in their assigned States and ensuring that stringent, effective enforcement action is undertaken based on intelligence inputs and complaints received through CVigil, voter helpline, etc, to ensure free, fair and voter friendly elections.

What they’re saying: CEC Sushil Chandra said “that the overarching spirit of deploying Special Observers is to objectively assess the poll preparedness, identify the critical gaps and guide the electoral machinery in the field to ensure impartial, inducement free, peaceful and covid safe elections.”

  • Chandra pointed out that each election is unique in itself, has its own logistics and challenges, yet higher voter turnout has to be encouraged. Special Observers thus need to be vigilant and be in touch with the Commission on a real time basis throughout the entire election process and should bring to the notice of the Commission any corrective measures required, he said.
  • He added that ECI wishes to provide a hassle free experience to voters at each polling station which have been provided with Assured Minimum facilities especially for Persons with Disabilities.

Postal Ballot for senior citizens over 80 years is another facility provided. Polling stations have been made covid protocol compliant and voter-friendly.

The Special Observers will soon be visiting their allocated states and starting their work with State CEOs and concerned Deputy Election Commissioners.

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