Bangalore is poll-ready, raring to go, says Bharatlal Meena

However, many polling officers complained of chaos. They said there were no proper guidelines.

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    Bangalore is all set to go to polls after almost eight years. It will be conducted in a free and fair manner, assured Bharatlal Meena, commissioner, Bruhat Bangalore Mahanagara Palike (BBMP).

    Addressing the media, he said the poll preparations have been peaceful. “People should take their identity cards to the polling booth for an easy entry. Sensitive and hyper sensitive areas would be videographed. In case of trouble, people may report to the officers or to police,” he said.

    He added that the administration’s aim is to complete the election process on Sunday peacefully. “We have adequate manpower to conduct elections. New electronic voting machines (EVMs) will be used at all polling stations. We have checked the EVMs and the likelihood of finding a faulty machine is less. But in case of any fault, engineers are stationed with each returning officer (RO),” he said.

    However, confusion prevailed in many mustering centres where EVMs were distributed. Many polling officers complained that their names were missing from the list at a mustering centre in MEI Polytechnic College in Rajajinagar.

    “In the list announced on Thursday, our names were present. But not anymore. When we complained, the officials are asking us to wait,” said 60-year-old Nagappa G, an officer working with the IISc.
    Many polling officers complained of chaos.  “There are no proper guidelines. No one knows when they will give us the EVMs and provide instructions to us,” said Srivatsav GS, a polling officer.
    Chaos at BBMP office

    Meanwhile, at the BBMP office premises on Saturday evening, at least 3,000 additional officers were asked to report for duty on Sunday in anticipation of a shortage of staff. But the staff, after waiting till 6 pm, was told they were not required.

    Further, the ROs and assistant ROs were to be paid TADA of Rs525 and Rs300 respectively. At 6.45 pm, only one counter was opened to pay the 3,000 officers, leading to more chaos. The two policemen stationed were unable to control the crowd. Later, the groups were divided into four and TADA was distributed. Shivaram, a teacher from Chamarajpet, said: “We had to wait from 8 am to 8 pm. Why did they do this when there was no requirement of additional staff?”

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