Stringent curbs in place to ensure peaceful counting in Kozhikode

District Collector Seeram Sambasiva Rao on Saturday issued prohibitory orders covering all rural police station limits in Kozhikode as part of security measures taken to ensure peaceful counting. The orders issued under Section 144 of the Code of Criminal Procedure will be in place till May 7.

Mr. Rao said the intention of the order was to ensure strict implementation of COVID-19 protocol and avert all possible chances of clashes in politically sensitive areas. No public gatherings or assembling of more than five persons would be permitted within a kilometre radius of the counting stations, he said.

Police officials from various rural stations said they would ensure that no public demonstrations or vehicle rallies were held. Stringent regulations as recommended by the police higher-ups would be in place in all critical containment zones in view of the COVID-19 scare, they said.

According to officials, the regulations would be applicable for all commercial establishments near the counting centres. Even shops selling essential commodities located within one kilometre radius of the counting station should remain closed.

Displaying election results using LED screens would be treated as a violation of the prohibitory orders. Distribution of sweets and bursting firecrackers would not be permitted. Officials said the premises of various political party offices would be brought under the scanner.

District Police Chief (Kozhikode Rural) A. Srinivas told The Hindu on Saturday that the support of 3,000 police officers would be used to ensure peaceful counting of votes. “Police pickets and patrolling have also been intensified to manage the law and order situation,” he said.

District Police Chief (Kozhikode City) A.V. George said the protection of the five counting centres within the city limits would be managed with the support of 1,000 police officers. They would be under the supervision of nine Assistant Commissioners, he added.

As part of the heightened security arrangements, drone cameras would be used for flawless aerial surveillance in the city. Police officials were also asked to impound vehicles used for non-emergency trips from 6 a.m. onwards on Sunday.

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Printable version | Jun 19, 2021 5:48:19 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/kozhikode/stringent-curbs-in-place-to-ensure-peaceful-counting-in-kozhikode/article34460836.ece

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