Reminders on Central force for Bengal civic polls

A Central force contingent during a route march.
A Central force contingent during a route march.

THE WEST BENGAL STATE ELECTION COMMISSION (SEC) on Wednesday sent a reminder to the Mamata Banerjee-led state government seeking to know about the availability of Central force for the forthcoming civic polls.

Respong to this, Bengal home secretary Basudev Banerjee in turn wrote afresh to the Centre requesting to know, at the earliest, the exact number of Central troops that the latter “can spare for Bengal and their expected time of arrival.”

Bengal had sent the first letter on this to the Centre last week. 

The Bengal poll panel has requisitioned 50 companies of Central force for the civic polls in Kolkata slated for 18 April and in another 91 civic bodies in the state scheduled for 25 April.   

In another development, the SEC has allowed with riders, the use of microphone for civic poll campaigning during the ongoing exam season.

In an order that will come into effect from Thursday, the poll panel has said that microphones could be used for electioneering from 3 p.m. to 10 p.m. on weekdays and from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. on holidays.

“Those using microphone shall have to comply to the prescribed sound limit corresponding to the type of area where it is being used. Sound monitors shall have to be employed for this purpose; besides no microphones can be used within 200 metres radius of an educational institute, ” state election commissioner Sushanta Ranjan Upadhaya said Wednesday evening.

“For residential area the sound limit is 55 decibel, for industrial zone it is 75 decibel and for other commercial zones it is 65 decibel,” he said.

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