MP Bypolls: Voters to seal the fate of 355 candidates, 1,51,681 first time voters to exercise the franchise   
ANI

BHOPAL: The fate of 355 candidates, including 12 ministers will be locked in EVMs as 63, 67,751 voters in 28 constituencies will elect their representatives to Assembly on Tuesday.

Voting for by-elections in 28 Assembly constituencies spreading in 19 districts of the state will be held from 7 am to 6 pm on Tuesday while adhering to the Covid-19 restrictions.

In the by-polls, 1,51,681 voters will exercise their franchise for the first time.  Of the 63, 67,751 voters, 3,380,498 are male, 2,987,050 women and 203 are third gender voters. As many as 9,361 booths have been set up for people to exercise their franchise and out of these, 3,038 are placed under the 'critical' category.

33,000 security personnel deployed

To conduct the free and fair polls, the ECI has made elaborate security arrangements in the poll-bound areas.  Around 33,000 security personnel have been deployed in 19 districts where these constituencies fall. 84 companies of paramilitary forces, 30 companies of SAF have been deployed in the constituencies, while around 10,000 police personnel and around 6000 home guards have also been positioned. In all 250 flying squads, 173 static surveillance teams and 293 police check-posts have been pressed into service.

The district collectors have taken action against habitual law offenders. In all 578 people with criminal records have been expelled from the districts and 62 criminals have been booked under NSA.

Special arrangements at booths amid Covid-19

In the wake of the Covid pandemic all necessary arrangements have been made for the free fair and corona free polling. The election commission has issued detailed instructions with special focus on social distancing and access to sanitization measures for voters and polling officials. The commission has directed for mandatory sanitization of polling stations, thermal screening of voters, sanitizer at the entry/exit point of every polling station and availability of masks. Posters informing about the Covid-19 preventions would be displayed at visible locations. The last hour of voting will be for COVID-19 patients and people suspected to be suffering from the disease, additional chief electoral officer Arun Tomar said.

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