State bodies deliver suggestions on free and fair polls

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IMPHAL, March 14: State chief electoral officer, O Nabakishore today chaired an interaction meeting with representatives of state NGOs, civil societies, and local clubs of the state at the Old Secretariat, conference hall.

The meeting was convened considering the upcoming 16th Lok Sabha election which will be held in two phases in the state on April 9 and 13, 2013.

Today’s meeting was attended by more than 100 individuals who provided several suggestions of the CSOs, NGOs and local clubs towards the conduct of a free and fair election.

Suggestions placed by the representatives of the civil organisations include provision of full proof security cover to the polling stations to prevent any booth capturing or other untoward incidents.

They also highlighted that the authorities need to check candidates buying votes through corruption during the election.

Speaking at the meeting, Nabakishore said that the interaction meeting which is first of its kind in the state aims to draw suggestions from the people to ensure the conduct of a free and fair election.

The meeting also aims to spread awareness on the importance of the parliamentary election and draw a larger number of voters, he said.

Nabakishore asserted that such meetings are organised under the Systematic Voters’ Education and Electoral Participation (SVEEP).

Elaborating further on the programs conducted under the SVEEP, Nabakishore said street play campaign had already been started since March 1.

A limited edition of shirts inscribed “Proud to vote,” and “Ei Vote thadani” and pamphlets will also be distributed to the masses, he said.

Rallies will also be organised ahead of the election, the chief election officer added.

First time voters should gain adequate knowledge on their voting rights before casting their first voting, he urged while observing that a wrong concept during the first time would be hard to correct.

He further called upon the people for a free and fair election.

He further lamented that the popularity of the Lok Sabha election is low as has been indicated by the low voters’ turnout in the past elections.

Since, election voter slips will be provided, the voters need not worry even if they have no EPIC cards, he said.

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