EC mandates rules for Assembly polls’ counting day
The Election Commission of India (EC) on Wednesday made it obligatory for all candidates and their brokers to have both unfavorable COVID-19 take a look at outcomes or each doses of a vaccine earlier than coming into the counting halls on May 2, when votes within the 5 ongoing Assembly polls are tabulated.
The EC issued directions for counting of votes within the West Bengal, Assam, Kerala, Tamil Nadu and Puducherry elections at a time the nation goes by an unprecedented surge of COVID-19. On Tuesday, the EC had banned all victory processions on May 2, and restricted the variety of individuals accompanying successful candidates to gather their certificates of election from the Returning Officer to 2.
“In view of second wave of pandemic and in order to ensure a completely Covid safe arrangements during counting the Commission has been regularly consulting the Chief Secretaries and the Chief Electoral Officers of all five poll going States/ UT and has taken their views and safety measures/ protocol to be followed during the pandemic,” an EC assertion mentioned.
The EC ordered the District Election Officers (DEO) to be the Nodal Officers for counting centres in an effort to be sure that COVID-19 associated rules are adopted.
“No candidates/agents will be allowed inside the counting hall without undergoing RT-PCR/RAT test or without having two doses of vaccination against Covid-19 and will have to produce negative RT-PCR report or RAT report or vaccination reports within 48 hours of start of counting,” the EC directions learn.
It added that the DEO ought to make preparations for the checks earlier than counting day.
“No public gathering outside the counting venue shall be allowed during the process of counting,” the EC mentioned.
It added that counting halls ought to be massive sufficient to keep up bodily distancing and have enough air flow. The counting centres in addition to sealed outer packing containers of the Electronic Voting Machines (EVM) and Voter Verifiable Paper Audit Trail (VVPAT) ought to be sanitised, it mentioned. If required, postal ballots might be counted in separate halls, it mentioned.