More than 70% of Chambal Gwalior division has been declared sensitive for bypolls slated on November 3. Even intelligence inputs suggest violence in most parts of the region.
Considering this fact, the police headquarters had requested deployment of 204 companies of central armed forces. State officials had requested deputy election commissioner Sudeep Jain to provide additional force. Nevertheless, considering assembly elections in Bihar, the request could not be approved and Madhya Pradesh has to settle with deployment of 84 companies.
There have been several reports of clashes between BJP and Congress workers in the region making the officials tread more carefully and suspecting violence during polls. Election Commission officials said 2,718 out of 9,361 polling booths have been declared sensitive. Over 2,000 sensitive polling booths fall in 16 assembly constituencies of Gwalior Chambal region. Of them, 2,214 polling booths fall in rural areas while 504 are in cities.
Twelve seats outside Gwalior Chambal region are slated for polls. More than 800 polling booths in these areas have been identified as sensitive. In all, 359 areas have been identified as hyper-sensitive and require special arrangements in terms of deployment of law enforcement agencies besides other officials to ensure free and fair elections in the region.
About 1,380 people have been identified who can intimidate voters. They are now on the police radar. About 4,815 police personnel and 2,578 home guards are also being sent to these areas. Fifty six companies of central armed police forces will be deployed in poll bound areas from Monday. About 56,000 polling officials have been pressed in to conduct free and fair elections.
Numbers of polling booths have been increased in view of Covid. In 2018, these 28 constituencies had 7936 polling booths but 1,441 additional booths have been set up so that numbers of voters do not exceed 1,000 on one booth. With 18% more booths, now the total numbers of polling booths have gone up to 9,361.
Assembly constituencies: 28
Voters: 63.68 lakh - (M: 33.72 lakh/ F: 29.77 lakh/ Third gender: 198/ Service voters: 18737)
Polling booths: 9,361
Polling officials on duty: 56,000