The drive to ensure free and fair polls has created a bewildering situation in Odisha’s Kendrapara district — notice has been sent under Section 107 of the Criminal Procedure Code to a dead man asking him to give a written undertaking that he will not breach peace and order in his locality.

The family of Banambar Mallick, who died two years ago in a road accident, was surprised to receive the notice asking him to appear before the executive magistrate and give the undertaking. Mallick was facing trial in connection with a petty offence before his death and the notice to him was served on the basis of a report by the local police station, his family members said.

Among others who received similar notices are the sitting chairman and an ex-chairman of Kendrapara urban local body.

Septuagenarians and octogenarians have not been spared either. Nrusingha Charan Panda (80), a retired school teacher who is among the recipients of the notice, said: “The authorities have made a mockery of the law.”

Kendrapara district bar association president Dhruba Charan Jena said: “We have drawn the attention of the district election office and the Superintendent of Police to the matter.”