Odisha By-polls: COVID-19 patients can vote wearing PPE kit

Bhubaneswar: COVID-19 patients can come down to vote in the by-election to Balsore and Tirtol Assembly Constituencies tomorrow by wearing PPE kit. However, they are advised not to come, said Chief Election Officer (CEO) SK Lohani today.

At a presser, Lohani said thermal screening of voters will be done before their entry into polling booths. People with high body temperature during the thermal screening  will be given a token to cast their vote at last, he added.

Besides, the number of polling booths has been increased in view of the COVID-19 pandemic. To ensure social distancing, a maximum of 1,000 voters will  be allowed at each polling station to cast their vote, said the CEO.

He said the number of polling booths has been increased from 198 to 446 in Balasore and from 265 to 373 in Tirtol.  Besides, health screening of poling agents have been done and only those with no health complication will join the duty.

The booths will be sanitized frequently during the polling. While duty officer will be provided with PPE kit, voters will be given gloves. Those having their names in voters’ list but do not have voter ID  can use any  of the 11 identity cards to cast their vote.

Around 3500 polling staff. ASHA workers and volunteers will carry out sanitisation and health screening of voters before their entry into polling stations.

While 86 booths have been identified as sensitive  in Balasore, Tirtol has 115 sensitive booths.  A total six companies of Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF), webcasting, CCTV, 90 platoons of police force and  251 police officer will be deployed during the voting.

The polling will be held from 7 am to 6  pm.


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