CEC Rajiv Kumar asks observers to ensure a free and fair election

New Delhi, Mar 11 (UNI) Chief Election Commissioner Rajiv Kumar on Monday directed observers to ensure fair competition and maintain proper law and order situation during the forthcoming Lok Sabha Elections.

During the day-long session, organised by the Election Commission of India, for observers to be deployed in the States and Union Territories in the run-up to the forthcoming Elections to the Lok Sabha and State Legislative Assemblies, Mr Kumar emphasised that the Observers as representatives of the Commission are expected to conduct themselves professionally and be accessible to all stakeholders including candidates.

He directed them to ensure a level-playing field for free, fair, intimidation and inducement-free elections. Observers were instructed to be tough but polite in their conduct on the field.

Mr Kumar asked them to visit the polling stations and familiarise themselves with the geography and take stock of any vulnerabilities and sensitive areas. He also mentioned that the Commission has re-drafted all circulars and updated the manuals, handbooks which are available on ECI website in a searchable and easy to read format.

The CEC added that handbooks and manuals have been prepared on the basis of roles and functions of different officials along with a checklist of Do’s and Don’ts.

Over 2150 senior officers drawn from IAS, IPS officers as well as officers from Indian Revenue Service and few other Central Services attended the briefing meeting. Few officials joined virtually from the office of Chief Electoral Officers in their respective States/UTs. Around 900 General Observers, 450 Police Observers and 800 Expenditure Observers are being deployed in the forthcoming elections.

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