Other States

No postal ballot facility for voters above 65 in Bihar elections: EC

In a statement, the EC said the decision was taken for the Assembly and the by-elections that are due soon due to logistical challenges.

In a statement, the EC said the decision was taken for the Assembly and the by-elections that are due soon due to logistical challenges.   | Photo Credit: Rajeev Bhatt

The Election Commission on Thursday said the postal ballot facility for electors above the age of 65 in the Bihar Assembly elections, which would have been the first time it would have been used since the Centre had notified it on June 19, would not be implemented.

In a statement, the EC said the decision was taken for the Assembly and the by-elections that are due soon due to logistical challenges. It had instructed Bihar authorities to limit the number of electors to 1,000 per polling station due to the pandemic, for which 34,000 additional stations are being set up.

Also read | Postal ballots for voters over 64 gives ruling party an edge: Yechury

“The Commission has been constantly monitoring the preparedness for the byelections and the General elections in view of this unprecedented environment,” it said.

The EC said the additional polling stations “would entail formidable logistical challenges of mobilising 1.8 lakh more polling personnel and other additional resources including requirement of much larger number of vehicles in Bihar. Similar challenges would be there for the coming by-elections.”

Option available to electors above 80

It said the option of postal ballots would be available to electors over 80 years of age, persons with disabilities, essential service workers and those infected with COVID-19 or suspected to be.

After the Law Ministry notified the extension of postal ballots to electors over 65, several political parties had raised concerns over the decision.

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Printable version | Aug 10, 2020 1:06:26 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/other-states/no-postal-ballot-facility-for-voters-above-65-in-bihar-elections-ec/article32105142.ece

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