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ECI guidelines: Token system to prevent crowding during bypolls

By Express News Service

BENGALURU: The Election Commission of India on Friday issued guidelines for conducting bypolls to two assembly seats in Karnataka’s Sira and Rajarajeshwari Nagar. From basic precautionary measures like mandatory use of masks, thermal scanners, social distancing at polling stations, the ECI has also come up with new measures to avoid crowding. Help desks for distribution of tokens will be set up to facilitate ‘first come first vote’ basis to avoid queuing of people.

 The option of postal ballot has been extended to persons with disabilities, voters above the age of 80 and those who have tested Covid-19 positive or in Home quarantine or isolation. The ECI has also permitted public gatherings within guidelines set by the MHA over Covid-19.

Thermal checking of all voters by ASHA workers, social distancing circles for 15-20 persons only with 6 feet distance depending on space, sanitizers at all entry and exit points, protective kit inclusive of mask, sanitizer, face shield and gloves for each polling officer has been mandated. 

Door-to-door campaign is allowed in groups of five, excluding security personnel. Roadshows are allowed with a cap of five vehicles per convoy and a half-hour interval between two sets of convoys.  Non-compliance of norms will attract penal action under the Disaster Management Act and Epidemics Act. Suvidha app will be used for the allocation of public spaces.

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