More than 60,000 security personnel, including the Home Guards and paramilitary forces, have been deployed across the city a day before the Lok Sabha elections here. Delhi Police Commissioner Amulya Patnaik told PTI that elaborate arrangements, according to the instructions of the Election Commission of India, are in place to ensure no anti-social element causes any menace.
Security personnel have been deployed at polling booths and special reserve parties and policemen are patrolling vulnerable areas, the police said. The Police Control Room Unit will also stay alert to calls of any complaints being made, especially relating to the election process, they added.
"The model code of conduct is being strictly enforced. There is a special watch on border areas to foil any attempt to infiltrate by anti-social elements to cause disruption. There will be strict vigil to ensure malpractices like liquor peddling and movement of anti-social elements with a purpose to influence voters do not happen," Patnaik said. Anti-terror measures are also in place and special arrangements have been made to check sabotage of polling booths, including election rigging, the Deputy Commissioner of Police (New Delhi) and the spokesperson of the force, Madhur Verma, said.
The officer added that extra picket teams have been deployed in border areas too. "Briefings were held with the polling staff on dispersal of EVMs and the routes to be taken to ensure no rigging of EVMs happens on the way. Night patrolling has been intensified to check use of muscle power and money to lure voters," Verma said. Adequate security forces have been deployed at identified polling stations with Quick Reaction Teams placed at congested areas across the district in case of any emergency, another official added.
The police have registered 1,378 FIRs and arrested 1,381 people under the Excise Act. They have also seized 691 unlicensed arms and weapons, and 3,007 cartridges and explosives, a statement said. It said 1,14,482 people have been booked till date under various sections of the CrPC and the Delhi Police Act. A police official said there are three facets to the security apparatus — at places where Electronic Voting Machines (EVMs) are kept, border checking, and law and order arrangements for polling and counting days. The officer said police will be involved in enforcing a dry day, which came into effect from 5 pm on Friday.
Another official said 39,000 police personnel and 13,000 Home Guards will be involved in ensuring the security of polling booths. They will be supplemented by police personnel from the Police Control Room and the traffic unit, along with 47 companies of paramilitary personnel, another official added. Each company comprises 100 personnel. All seven Lok Sabha seats in Delhi will head for polling on Sunday.
(With inputs from agencies.)