SHILLONG, Jan 08: The election commission out of the 3082 polling stations in the state has identified 444 as critical, 536 as vulnerable, 67 as both and sought an additional deployment of 107 company of the Central Armed Police Force (CAPF) for the smooth conduct of the upcoming Assembly polls.
The state chief electoral officer, Frederick R Kharkongor on Monday informed that 536 of the 3082 polling stations in the state have been identified as “vulnerable” and another 444 as “critical”.
“A total of 67 have been categorized as both vulnerable and critical polling stations and the rest 2025 were declared as normal,” he said while adding that the matter however is still dynamic and it can change before the elections.
Kharkongor informed that the polling stations were declared as vulnerable on accounts of their sensitivity from the security point of view and critical because if there is voting in favour of one particular candidate.
According to him, the deployment was sought for in addition to the CAPFs already deployed for law and order including militancy related problem in the state.
He informed that the approval of the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) is now being awaited.
It may be mentioned here that the current ninth Meghalaya Assembly will expire on March 6, this year. Elections to constitute the tenth Meghalaya Assembly would be held next month.
Whether there are polling stations affected by militancy related problem, the chief electoral officer said there are militancy threats in some pockets of East Garo Hills District.
On the other hand, Kharkongor said that the state deployment plan will be done in consultation with the election observers to be appointed by the Election Commission.
Moreover, the CEO informed that the final electoral roll will be published on January 10.
As on September 27, 2017, the number of registered voters stood at 17.68 lakh.
“Another 60,000 have been added and with this we have crossed the targeted 18 lakh enrolment,” he said.
Reacting to a query, Kharkongor said that election dates are expected to be announced by the Election Commission after the final electoral roll of the state is published.
“We expect similar schedule (like in the last 2013 elections) since the current house will expire on March 6,” he said.
Meanwhile, he assured that the state is all geared up for the upcoming election as all preparations are in place.