Centre asks states to remain alert on counting day, claims calls given to ‘incite violence’
The home ministry asked states to take adequate measures where electronic voting machines are kept, and in the venues where votes are counted.
The Ministry of Home Affairs on Wednesday asked states and the Union Territories to remain alert regarding a possible eruption of violence in different parts of the country during counting of votes for the Lok Sabha elections on Thursday.
The ministry said it has alerted the state chief secretaries and directors general of police in “the wake of calls given and statements made in various quarters” for sparking violence and to cause disruption while the counting process is on. It asked states and Union Territories to take adequate measures for “the security of strongrooms”, where electronic voting machines are kept, and in the venues where votes are counted.
An unidentified official told PTI that the central security agencies received the notification after some organisations and individuals, particularly in Uttar Pradesh, West Bengal, Bihar and Tripura, gave certain statements which may lead to violence and disruption in counting process.
West Bengal witnessed the most violence during the all the phases in the elections. The Centre had dispatched security forces in large numbers to quell the violence. Following the desecration of Vidyasagar’s bust on May 14, the Election Commission had decided to end campaigning in the state one day ahead of schedule.
The Lok Sabha elections were held in seven phases from April 11 to May 19. Counting of votes will take place on Thursday.