Demands district monitoring panel to receive complaints

The Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (DMK) has sought deployment of paramilitary forces and the Central Reserve Police to ensure free and fair elections to all the local bodies in the State.

In a petition to the State Election Commissioner S. Ayyar through the party's legal wing secretary R.S. Bharathi, the DMK sought certain arrangements right from the date of announcement of elections to the local bodies for free and fair polls. The local body elections are due to be held next month.

The DMK demanded a district monitoring committee, headed by a retired High Court judge, to receive poll-related complaints for immediate redressal and deployment of paramilitary forces and Central reserve police with sufficient strength at every panchayat union level.

The SEC should have at least three retired Supreme Court judges to supervise the arrangements for a free and fair poll and the conduct of elections within the spirit of the Constitution.

The State Election Commissioner should be available round the clock to receive complaints and should not keep himself away from any recognised political party and the media.

It demanded the formation of a committee comprising all recognised political parties at the district level.

State Ministers should be prohibited from campaigning in districts at least one week prior to the date of poll.

On the polling day, the SEC should restrict the role of the State police and utilise the services of Central police forces in manning the booths. It should arrange for complete video coverage in all polling stations and make available recorded CDs to all parties.