Government employees in Puducherry turn videographers.
They have been engaged by Election Commission this year to videograph electoral proceedings to ensure that political parties and government officials follow the model code of conduct.
Equipped with small handycams, they move around with flying squads. What is surprising is that none of them has any formal training in taking videos.
Usually, the Election Commission hires people from local photo and video studios which often split the work among themselves and provide round-the-clock support to the EC. This year, however, these studios have been overlooked and instead government employees have been drafted for the work, says an election department official.
By employing the government staff, there is a lot of money saved. The only investment is purchase of handheld videocameras, the official says.
However, the studio owners feel that employing amateurs would only create more problems. According to a studio owner, one of the main issues is with the operations. Even with experienced hands, there are problems sometimes. Videography is not an easy thing when it comes to covering poll proceedings, he says.