Polls in Kandhamal district was free, fair and peaceful
In all the three Assembly Constituencies of Kandhamal District, Polling was held on 16.04.2009. No incident of violence, intimidation of voters etc has been reported from any part of the District and Polling Stations. There has been a good Voter turnout in all the 3 Assembly Constituencies. 66.49, 65.67 & 65.23 percentages of votes have been polled in 82-Balliguda, 83-G.Udayagiri (ST) and 84-Phulbani (ST) Assembly Constituencies, respectively. This comes to 65.73% of Voter turnout in the district as a Unit.
To ensure peaceful polls, District Administration had taken various steps such as continuous patrolling by CRPF, Rapid Action Force, Mobile Patrolling, area domination exercises by CRPF and State Police, checking of vehicles, identification of mischief mongers and taking preventive action against them etc.
Further following steps were taken to ensure free and fair Poll.
Firstly, arrangements were made in Relief camps for providing security and transportation to those voters who wanted to exercise their votes. These measures were utilized by residents of the Relief camps and the same resulted in very high participation of such persons in democratic process. Around 90% of those staying in relief camp exercised their voting rights.
Secondly, there were concerns about participation of minorities staying in Blocks such as Balliguda, G.Udayagiri, Tikaballi, K.Nuagam, Phiringia etc, in democratic process. To ensure that every person, who wants to exercise his rights, get a chance to do same, 33 Special Sector Officers were deployed on the date of Poll. These Officers were given duties to visit and build confidence of vulnerable sections of society in 5 to 7 such habitations. This measure resulted in overwhelming response from such vulnerable habitations. Percentage of voting from such habitations is 68.44% which is more than the average voting percentage of 65.73 in Kandhamal District.
Thirdly, a Voter Assistance Cell (VAC) was opened with a Toll Free Telephone bearing No.1800-345-6768. The same was working to assist such voters from 1.4.2009 to 17.4.2009. In the VAC a total no.of 443 calls were received and registered till the date of Poll. Out of same, 251 persons were assisted by giving them duplicate EPIC cards and 14 persons were assisted by providing them transportation and security on the date of Poll. 175 cases could not be provided with duplicate EPIC as Photos are missing in the Photo Electoral Roll. These cases will be taken up in the next phase of EPIC programme. All these voters were explained about 13 alternative documents, which can be used at the time of Poll. Because of all such measures Polls in Kandhamal district was free, fair and peaceful.
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