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EC meets political leaders of Kannur

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ON DUTY: Election Commissioner N. Gopalaswamy being received in Kannur on Thursday on his arrival to meet political party representatives and officials.
ON DUTY: Election Commissioner N. Gopalaswamy being received in Kannur on Thursday on his arrival to meet political party representatives and officials.

Staff Reporter

KANNUR: Election Commissioner N. Gopalaswamy said here on Thursday that all steps would be taken to ensure free and fair election in the district.

Mr. Gopalaswamy, during his visit to the district, interacted with representatives of political parties here as part of holding consultation with leaders and officials to hear their views and suggestions on electoral preparations.

Talking to reporters later, Mr. Gopalaswamy said that most of the political party leaders demanded that the electoral identity cards be insisted for casting votes in the coming Assembly elections. He said this demand would be discussed with the Chief Election Commissioner and appropriate decision would be take. He also said that the additional police forces would be deployed in sensitive areas in the district on the polling day. He would discuss the issue with district administration and police officials, he said.

Earlier the EC met party representatives at the Government Guest House. State Electoral Officer Nalini Netto accompanied him. District Collector K.S. Srinivas was also present.

Representatives of the parties belonging to the United Democratic Front appealed to the EC to make electoral photo identity cards mandatory for casting votes. Insistence of the electoral photo identity cards alone could check cases of impersonation, they said. They also demanded adequate police personnel in sensitive polling booths, as the present system appointing one police personnel in a booth could not ensure free and fair poll.

Leaders representing the parties in the Left Democratic Front told the EC that the efforts to isolate Kannur as a district that warrants special security arrangements would be improper.

The EC later also met officials including DIG (North Zone) V. Shantharam; Superintendent of Police Mathew Polycarp and Deputy Collector (Election) Sanal Kumar.

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