NATIONAL

EC rejects plea for advanement of poll timings

No change in polling time

The Election Commission has rejected a request made in view of Ramzan for advancing the start of polling from 7 a.m. to 5 a.m. in the remaining three phases. The Commission took the decision on a petition by a Delhi-based advocate, Mohammad Nizamuddin Pasha, following a Supreme Court directive on May 2. Listing the reasons, the EC said that under the current poll timing of 7 a.m. to 6 p.m. (11 hours), “our polling team needs to spend at least 15-16 hours of active time in the poll process ensuring that no mistake occurs.” The same applied to the security forces. The Commission said advancing the start of polling “will also advance the arrival of polling agents, many of whom even now come late and are not able to reach by 6 a.m. and which hinders starting the mock poll process”. As the time of sunrise varies State to State, additional administrative and security arrangements would have to be made.