The Lok Sabha elections will be held during the peak summer season. Realising that voters may suffer from heatstroke while standing in queues at polling booths, the Election Commission (EC) has said it would supply medical kits and oral rehydration salts at all booths.
In a circular sent to chief electoral officer Ashok Jain, the ECI has asked to make proper arrangements to shield officials deputed on election duty and voters from scorching heat at polling stations.
The ECI has asked to provide oral rehydration salts to the voters who suffer from heatstroke. “Every polling party will be supplied with oral rehydration salts for their own use as well as for any voter needing the same in case of a heatstroke. A hand-bill on “do’s and don’ts” (to avoid heatstroke) may be prepared and supplied to polling parties,” said the circular sent by the EC. In 2009, the polling for Lok Sabha elections in Rajasthan was held on May 7. Summer is at its peak during May & June.
The polling may be held during this period this time too. Many people also avoid exercising their franchise due to intense hot weather conditions. So the commission has prepared a detailed guideline for the officials on election duty. The guideline states that district electoral officer (district collector) shall arrange services of para-medical staff from the offices of chief district medical officers. “And one such para-medical staff member shall accompany every mobile patrol unit and sector officer along with essential heatstroke medicines. Such mobile patrol units shall contact every polling station once in every hour so that instant medical assistance, if needed, could be provided to any voter.”
The EC has also advised the election duty officers to take preventive measures to curb heatstroke cases. “The district election officer would ask the election officials to carry wet towels to protect themselves against dehydration and also advise female officials to avoid taking their children along to polling stations due to hot weather conditions,” the circular stated further.
Every polling party will be supplied with oral rehydration salts for their own use as well as for any voter needing the same in case of a heatstroke.
The district electoral officer (district collector) shall arrange services of para-medical staff from the offices of chief district medical officers.