Election Commission Assesses Covid Situation In Poll-Bound States

by PTI - Dec 27, 2021 03:51 PM +05:30 IST
Election Commission Assesses Covid Situation In Poll-Bound StatesElection Commission of India

The Election Commission on Monday assessed the COVID-19 situation in the five poll-bound states with the Union health secretary and asked the top brass of the Narcotics Control Bureau to check the influence of drugs in elections.

The commission also met top officials of ITBP, BSF and SSB and pressed for maintaining strict vigil on international borders some of the poll-going states share.

Sources aware of the meetings said Health Secretary Rajesh Bhushan briefed the poll panel for nearly an hour on the Covid situation in the country, especially the poll-bound Uttarakhand, Manipur, Goa, Punjab and Uttar Pradesh.

The issue of the spread of Omicron variant of the coronavirus was also discussed.

'It was a session meant to get information. The commission assessed the situation based on statistics provided (by the Health Ministry),' a functionary said.

The health secretary also briefed the EC about the Covid protocols and Home Ministry guidelines issued in the recent past to check the spread of the virus.

During their interaction with top officials of NCB, Indo-Tibetan Border Police (ITBP), Sashastra Seema Bal (SSB) and Border Security Force (BSF), the poll panel asked the Narcotics Control Bureau to ensure drugs do not influence polls.

The commission in particular referred to Punjab and Goa with regard to drug smuggling, the sources said.

The terms of Goa, Punjab, Uttarakhand and Manipur legislative Assemblies are ending on different dates in March next year while the Uttar Pradesh Assembly's term will end in May.

The Election Commission is expected to announce election dates next month.

On Tuesday, the Chief Election Commissioner and fellow Election Commissioners are scheduled to visit Uttar Pradesh to take stock of the poll preparedness in the state.

An Allahabad High Court bench of Justice Shekhar Yadav had on Thursday last urged the government and the poll panel to consider postponing the Uttar Pradesh assembly elections for a month or two and banning all political rallies amid the fears of an impending third wave of Covid.

When asked about the observation, CEC Sushil Chandra had said in Dehradun on Friday that the EC would be visiting Uttar Pradesh soon and 'an appropriate decision as required by the situation will be taken after we review it.' The commission has already visited Punjab, Goa and Uttarakhand as part of its pre-poll stock-taking exercise.

(This story has been published from a wire agency feed without modifications to the text. Only the headline has been changed.)

Get Swarajya in your inbox everyday. Subscribe here.

An Appeal...

Dear Reader,

As you are no doubt aware, Swarajya is a media product that is directly dependent on support from its readers in the form of subscriptions. We do not have the muscle and backing of a large media conglomerate nor are we playing for the large advertisement sweep-stake.

Our business model is you and your subscription. And in challenging times like these, we need your support now more than ever.

We deliver over 10 - 15 high quality articles with expert insights and views. From 7AM in the morning to 10PM late night we operate to ensure you, the reader, get to see what is just right.

Becoming a Patron or a subscriber for as little as Rs 1200/year is the best way you can support our efforts.

Become A Patron
Become A Subscriber
Comments ↓
Get Swarajya in your inbox everyday. Subscribe here.

Latest Articles

    Artboard 4Created with Sketch.